The Internet Industry Association (IIA) has welcomed the Coalition’s NBN plan highlighting important factors to be addressed besides the underlying technology and broadband speeds.
Whatever government comes into play, it stated the NBN needs to address affordability, adoption and usage by businesses and consumers.
“Increasing the speed and end-user’s broadband connection, while desirable, does not necessarily address the issue of affordability, adoption and usage,” IIA chief executive, Peter Lee, said. “It will be important, under the Coalition’s Plan, that a focus on encouraging adoption and usage by consumers and small business also forms part of that plan.”
The IIA also highlighted the Coalition’s commitment to competitive and free markets, particularly where it promotes innovation and delivers incentives for businesses to continue investing locally. The structural reform of the industry that a wholesale-only owned and operated NBN has sought to achieve also needs to remain an important part of the Coalition’s Plan, the IIA said.
The Coalition’s Plan also commits to initiate three reviews including an NBN Co strategic review, an independent audit into broadband policy and NBN Co’s governance and an independent cost-benefit analysis and review of regulation.
“While the IIA supports the underlying principle of these reviews, we believe that the Coalition needs to ensure that a plan for continuity of the NBN rollout is implemented during this review phase so that the industry, businesses and consumers are not left pondering in a state of flux that creates further uncertainty or unnecessary delay in upgrading our national broadband infrastructure”, Lee said.