Finding a strategy to upgrade telecommunications in Australia has been a challenge for both Labor and the Coalition over the past decade. Between 2004 and 2008 governments from both sides of politics were were unable to reach a deal with Telstra for an upgrade that would fairly balance the interests of Telstra’s shareholders and those of consumers and rival carriers.
After winning the 2007 election promising a $4.7 billion National Broadband Network to be built in partnership with the private sector, Labor’s talks with Telstra reached an impasse by late 2008, prompting an abrupt shift in policy. In April 2009 the Government announced it would set up a new taxpayer‐funded company, NBN Co, to build a $43 billion fibre access network.
This paper presents the background detail for the Coalition's National Broadband Network plan.