NBN Withdraws Its Plan That Would Have Increased The Cost of Internet

NBN Withdraws Its Plan That Would Have Increased The Cost of Internet
Image: NBN/Gizmodo Australia

The company responsible for rolling out the National Broadband Network has withdrawn its plan that would have dramatically increased the cost of internet. Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland is declaring this a win for consumers.

NBN Co submitted a variation to its Special Access Undertaking to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) back in March. The Special Access Undertaking, the ACCC explains, is a key part of the regulation of the NBN. It sets the rules for broadband providers to access the NBN over the coming decades, such as how the minimum service standards and price caps will be determined over time, to promote competitive and efficient markets that benefit consumers.

The proposal by NBN, however, was considered “unacceptable” by Rowland.

“At the core of the Albanese government’s priorities are the long-term interests of Australian consumers,” Rowland is quoted by the Sydney Morning Herald as saying. She declared similar in a tweet on Thursday morning.

“This means affordable prices and a quality, resilient network. In contrast, the Special Access Undertaking variation lodged in March 2022 under the former government would have allowed NBN price increases of inflation plus three per cent a year on some products,” she continued. “This was underpinned by unrealistic revenue expectations, and reflected a view to privatisation.”

If implemented, the pricing would have increased the access charge for any 100Mbps or higher plan by the rate of the consumer price index (CPI) with an additional 3 per cent on top for the first two years.

A release from Aussie Broadband quotes stats from the ACCC in declaring that the cost to retailers for 50Mbps fixed line broadband connections would have been expected to equal 100Mbps plan offerings within only a few years. Naturally, Aussie Broadband said it welcomes the call for a revised Special Access Undertaking that “provides more certainty for retailers”.

The plan now, the ACCC said, is for the watchdog to host an industry meeting in mid-August to allow NBN Co and its stakeholders to present their views on a revised variation to the undertaking. The ACCC will also publicly consult on the revised proposal, when it receives it, as required under the relevant legislation.

Comments

  • Nice they have been told ‘no you cannot put throught this money farming’, however they have been playing this game since the nbn started and not done as should have been. Decreased pricing and increased reliability/access are the two biggest issues that should be looked at.

    • NBN should of been… was Labours plan.

      Stuff that’s overpriced and under delivered… was Liberals changes (ffs copper really).

      Internet connectivity suffered during the Pandemic, should NBN Co have installed more capability… NO… let’s charge people more for the same crap.

      Having Labour back in charge might see some more shack up at NBN Co… but sadly economy sucks and we are going to end up either funding it one way or another.

      • Well, yes. We will end up funding it either way, however we already know that the Coalition model is literally more expensive in every single way.

        And at least now NBN doesn’t have the same pressure to pump profits to fatten up the company for monopoly privatisation in order to pay for more indoor 50 metre swimming pools and Olympic-standard Pickleball courts in Liberal and National Party seats.

  • Whoever thought keeping the NBN Co on copper and buying new/old copper (Telstra’s leftovers) should probably be nailed to a cross somewhere! lol

    • Malcolm Turnbull? If there’s a “should be crucified” list I won’t say he shouldn’t be on it but there’s an awful lot of LNP ghouls – his boss at the time Tony Abbott among them – that deserve it more.

      • I dunno. I remember the petition we did up with over a quarter million signatures requesting he not swap to mixed tech and keep it to fttp. His response could be summed up in a single line: “sorry, we have a mandate to implement the mixed technology solution as stated.”

        Politicians need to get it into their head that just because you got elected, doesn’t mean the electorate automatically thinks all your ideas are gold, and the fact that Turnbull automatically thought that is probably worthy of a little wood and copper treatment.

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