Monday, 12 December 2016 21:05

Government proposes broadband levy on telcos to help fund regional NBN rollout Featured


The federal government has proposed legislation to establish a Regional Broadband Scheme and the introduction of an industry levy to fund the costs of paying for the provision of the National Broadband Network in unprofitable regional areas.

The proposed RBS is estimated to raise around $40 million by imposing a levy on “superfast” (or “NBN-comparable”)   fixed-line broadband services which can offer speeds of 25 megabits per second or more.

Non-NBN fixed-line networks are currently estimated to provide 10% of fixed-line services in operation.

The government says the NBN, as the largest network, will continue to be responsible for the overwhelming majority of funding for regional and rural services and will make around 90% of RBS contributions, with 10% from the industry.

The RBS levy on “superfast” fixed-line broadband services, as outlined in the draft legislation, would start with a base charge of $7.09 per service per month in the first year, 2017-2018.

The charges will be indexed to the Consumer Price Index and, in addition to the base charge, there will be an administrative fee, which will begin at $0.01266 per line per month.

The legislation says the levy won’t apply to exchange-based DSL services, satellite broadband, fixed wireless or mobile broadband services.

The government says the proposed levy would “sustainably fund” the long-term costs of regional and remote Australia’s NBN satellite and fixed wireless networks and the reforms will provide a “strong structural framework for superfast broadband” including:

•    Improving the competitive framework that superfast broadband infrastructure providers operate within; and

•    Formalising the government’s commitment to ensuring all Australian premises can access a superfast broadband connection through the Statutory Infrastructure Provider regime.

The government says the reforms will improve commercial opportunities and bolster competition, and “protect the interests of consumers by preventing anti-competitive behaviour” and put downward pressure on broadband prices”.

The announcement on Monday of the proposed reforms followed the Productivity Commission’s report last week calling for the telecommunications industry Universal Service Obligation (USO) to be scrapped, and labelling the long-term agreement that sees Telstra receiving $300 million a year to provide landlines to everyone as "difficult to justify".

In its response to the Commission’s report, Telstra said that it is, in fact, the "largest contributor" to USO funding, with an annual contribution of around $140 million.

In calling for its scrapping, the Productivity Commission said that in a digital age, the voice-based telecommunications USO is "anachronistic and needs to change".

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here


It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinatrs and campaigns and assassistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.



iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.


Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired in 2020. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous