Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Bush the biggest loser if Telstra bill fails.



Download WordDownload Word

image

 

MEDIA RELEASE

 

 

SENATOR RON BOSWELL

LEADER OF THE NATIONAL PARTY IN THE SENATE

SENATOR FOR QUEENSLAND

 

BUSH THE BIGGEST LOSER IF TELSTRA BILL FAILS

 

Nationals’ Senate Leader, Ron Boswell, today warned that blocking the Telstra sale bill would sentence the bush to a third class telecommunications infrastructure when they could have travelled first class.

 

Senator Boswell urged the Senate not to cheat the bush out of a competitive future by stopping $671 m in telecommunications reform and the environment.

 

‘Families in rural and regional Australia need this legislation. They can’t get online without it. They can’t make untimed local calls without it. They can’t lock into new ventures and new ways of accessing basic services that other Australians take for granted.’

 

‘The bush needs cheaper calls and local internet access to tap into new business, community, education and government opportunities.’

 

‘This is a one-off opportunity for the bush and they support it as the way forward. Emerging leaders, particularly women are using this technology to restore the social and economic bases of their communities.’

 

‘The bush will only have a future if it has access to information and communication. The social bonus is the only way to fund the necessary upgrades, cheaper calls, Rural Transaction Centres, further RTIF programs, local internet access and improved mobile phone and television coverage.’

 

‘People in the bush are excited about the potential of communications and the hundreds of millions of dollars worth of cheaper, better, more reliable, more advanced and versatile phone calls.’

 

‘Today we have the opportunity to get the bush “online” and give it a future.’

 

‘The Nationals have gone in hard to get this multi-hundred-million dollar package for the bush. We had lengthy discussions with the Prime Minister and the Minister, Senator Alston, to deliver what the bush needs and has asked for.’

 

‘Labor has not been able to answer how the bush will survive without modern communications.’

 

 

 

ENDS

10 March 1999

 

 

 

JS