Labor promises to fix NBN

Labor leader Anthony Albanese has shelved plans to sell the NBN to Telstra and has instead promised to spend $2.4 billion to boost the fibre rollout to an additional 1.5 million households by 2025:

Of the 1.5 million additional premises which will have faster access to fibre, almost half, or 660,000 homes and businesses, will be in the regions…

Mr Albanese will pledge on Wednesday to keep it under public ownership, at least until the repair job is complete.

“For now, there is a repair job that needs to be done and keeping the NBN in public ownership provides NBNCo with the certainty it needs to pursue that job,” the policy document says.

“Fundamentally, this is about powering our digital future, improving quality of life and making connectivity a competitive advantage for Australians.

“Mindlessly privatising the NBN would pose risks to consumers, regional Australia, and indeed to taxpayers.”

For mine, the NBN won’t be ‘mission accomplished’ until it provides speeds near the top of global rankings. At present, Australia’s fixed broadband is ranked an abysmal 54th in the world according to Ookla’s Speedtest Global Index:

Australia's fixed broadband speed

Telstra has positioned itself as the likely acquirer of the NBN should it be privatised, which would effectively return it to the vertically integrated monopoly that existed following privatisation by the Howard Government in the 1990s.

The federal government must not make the same mistake twice. Creating another vertically integrated monopoly would damage competition, taxpayers and end-users.

The NBN must remain in public hands.

Unconventional Economist
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  1. Got an email yesterday from my provider that they have cut my upload speed by half down to 20mbs because of the increased wholesale NBN costs.

  2. It’s vital, that LibLab has the same policy. If its left hand deviates even in the slightest from its right hand, you have the beginnings of anarchy, and the very foundations of democracy are threatened. For shame, Mr Albanese!

  3. If they sell it, just float it, and cap the percentage any significant holder can buy at 10% and float it publically

    That’ll give all the players a chance to buy part of it. Telstra, optus, tpg, voda, etc.

  4. 1) A public de-facto monopolist essential infrastructure should NEVER be privatised.
    2) in case it still is decided to privatise it, it should be auctioned off, not just sold to Telstra

    I’ll be leaving the country if the Fed Gov would continue this stupidity of selling essential public infrastructure assets. How would this benefit the general public long-term?

    • How would this benefit the general public long-term?

      What are you, a commie ? The efficiency of private industry, of course.


    • C'est de la folieMEMBER

      in case it still is decided to privatise it, it should be auctioned off, not just sold to Telstra

      Wrong sorry.

      It should be licensed to (eg) Telstra in a competitive tender run once a year with prospective renters given the opportunity to see the assets for twenty minutes after making an appointment for inspection – after QR coding in and turning up on time for their appointment.

      Those who win the tender each year should have a 1800 call line to ring in the event they find any issues with the service they are receiving

  5. To have meaningful policy is to lose the election. If you have a policy stance that has enough substance to be attacked means you’ve thought about it, and let us face it, most voters aren’t going to think about it, so will swallow the BS and scare tactics hook, line and sinker, and Scummo and his infestation of parasites will continue to govern.

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      +1 If Albo was savvy, he would prepare a 10-page brochure for his “plan” and pay one of those big hitter (aka charging) consultants to give a sign off on his “plan”. So far, so good for Scummo on his climate change scamphlet (hat tip to Chris Bowen for that sobriquet), which the (stupid) polity have seemingly been “sucker baited” in to “hook, line and sinker”?

    • Wireless tech will never directly compete with fibre. 5G and whatever succeeds it are good mobile solutions, or solutions if you cannot get fibre, but that’s about it.

  6. reusachtigeMEMBER

    It was that Labor lover Malcolm Turnbull that farkt it in the first place! NBN will always be worse under Labor.

  7. nbn is a dead duck…I have been waiting for my connection for 4 months now, installer turned up yesterday and didn’t know how to complete the install. Now I am back in the queue….probably for another 3 months.
    Now seriously considering moving to Telstra’s 5G Home Internet, with speeds a multiple of nbn plans at lower cost, 1 TB of data per month included. Who needs nbn?

  8. So I’ll get an upgrade to FTTP for the “low low cost” of selling our sovereignty to become a CCP vassal state? Add to which I’ll probably lose my stage 3 tax cut and my kids will probably find their inheritance taxed?

    Where do I not sign up?

  9. A friend of mine lives in an outer suburb of Newcastle. He has NBN fibre on a business plan, partially paid for by his employer (a US transport startup that is now a household name). 1Gbit/1Gbit symmetrical for ~$700/month.

    This is the exact same FTTP install that regular punters get; the speed is just a configuration setting on NBN’s end.

    Nothing beats fibre for capacity and upgradability.