Libs would abandon NBN: Abbott

  • Money would be diverted to roads
  • Part of plan to bring budget into surplus
  • Alternative plan would open Telstra and Optus cable networks

Australian IT site ZDNet has reported today that Tony Abbott, the opposition leader, unveiled plans to wind back the $37bn National Broadband Network if elected. The move would come as part of a broad range of cuts that would bring the budget back into surplus.

"Better broadband will once more be delivered through market competition, freeing more money to tackle pressing problems like the traffic gridlock in outer metropolitan areas," said Abbott.

Malcolm Turnbull, the Shadow Communications minister, has previously submitted proposals to reduce the scope of the NBN by, amongst other changes, opening Telstra and Optus’ existing fibre-optic networks to wholesale to other providers. Turnbull’s reduced scope plan has been priced by independent analysis at $16.9bn.

Most internet service providers, including Optus, Internode and Exetel have already signed an agreement with the NBN, with TPG and Telstra holding out while other conditions are attended to.

NBN-based connections are not yet widely available. For those who want to take advantage of great value plans with short or no contracts, we recommend TPG’s Unlimited $60 ADSL2+ Bundle (6 month contract) – Call 1300 106 571; Club Telco has an unlimited phone and internet connection for $70/$90 (depending on location) with no contract- Call 1300 138 155; Internode has a 200GB Easy Bundle for $80 with no contract, call on 1300 106 571.