NBN network rollout costs among the highest in the world

NBN network rollout costs among the highest in the world
NBN network rollout costs among the highest in the world

The National Broadband Network’s FTTP (fibre-to-the-premises) connections are costing $4405 on average and are among the most expensive in the world, according to an industry expert.

Rod Tucker, a telecommunications expert and professor at the University of Melbourne, told the Senate committee overseeing NBN that Australia FTTP connections on average per premises was way higher than New Zealand’s $NZ2800 ($2677) and even the United States’ $US1719 ($2259), The Australian reported.

“Australia’s FTTP rollout is likely to be one of the most expensive, if not the most expensive, in the world,” he said in a question on notice tabled in the Senate.

Even new technologies were not able to reduce connection costs, Dr Tucker said.

For comparison, he said Verizon in the US had halved FTTP connection costs since the start of the rollout while in France and Spain, operator Orange had reduced connection costs by 10 per cent each year.

NBN Co, however, claims that this cost is fixed, Dr Tucker said.

In fact, many countries with high GDP per capita, like Australia, have in fact lower costs for FTTP.

An NBN spokeswoman told the Australian that the “extremely high cost of deploying FTTP to every single premise is why almost every country around the world is deploying a mixture of technologies to deliver better broadband”.

“Whilst smaller countries like Singapore may not be able to ­afford to deliver FTTP to every single premise, larger countries like the US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and the UK and ­others are deploying a combination of ... technologies to deliver better broadband — just as we are doing at NBN.”

Adding to the controversy is recent research by the Centre for Research Excellence in the Social Determinants of Health Equity that examined the rollout of NBN technologies as of December 2016. It said "preliminary analyses suggest areas of greatest socio-economic disadvantage overlap with regions typically receiving NBN infrastructure of poorer quality". 

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Nbn Connectivity

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