Coalition to Eliminate Hundred of Mobile Blackspots Across Australia
13 August 2013
THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MHR, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
THE HON. MALCOLM TURNBULL MHR,
SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS AND BROADBAND
MR LUKE HARTSUYKER MHR,
SHADOW MINISTER FOR REGIONAL COMMUNICATIONS
COALITION TO ELIMINATE HUNDREDS OF MOBILE PHONE
BLACK SPOTS ACROSS AUSTRALIA
If elected, the Coalition will ensure regional, remote and outer metropolitan communities have access to improved mobile phone coverage.
A Coalition government will invest $100 million to address mobile phone black spots across Australia.
Hundreds of regional and remote communities do not currently have access to adequate mobile phone coverage.
The Coalition’s Plan will address this issue in remote and regional areas by building hundreds of much needed base stations across Australia.
If elected, a Coalition government will partner with local communities, state governments and telecommunications companies to ensure that the total new investment in black spots is far greater than our $100 million commitment.
This policy will provide $80 million for a Mobile Network Expansion Programme that will improve mobile phone coverage along major transport routes, in small communities and in locations prone to experiencing natural disasters.
The Mobile Network Expansion Programme is expected to generate at least an additional $80 million investment from the major mobile phone carriers.
The Coalition will also provide $20 million for a Mobile Black Spot Programme to address unique mobile coverage problems – such as locations with high seasonal demand – and deliver a targeted response. A Coalition government will fund up to 50 per cent of the cost of deploying mobile black-spot solutions. Our policy will seek to maximise the contribution of mobile phone network providers as well as economic and social benefits.
The Coalition will also work with the NBN, a company fully owned by Australian taxpayers, to co-locate new mobile phone base stations with many of the NBN’s fixed wireless broadband towers that are being rolled out across regional Australia – a sensible solution that has not happened under Labor.
The last Coalition government made the elimination of mobile phone black spots a national priority. However, Kevin Rudd abolished the Coalition’s $2.4 billion fund that was put in place to upgrade communications in rural, regional and remote parts of Australia.
The Labor government has wasted billions on uneconomic infrastructure but many Australians still can’t access a reliable mobile phone network.
The Coalition’s policy to tackle mobile phone back spots is part of our Plan to build a strong, prosperous economy and a safe, secure Australia.