People in the bush may have to pay more for NBN

NBN co-chief executive officer Mr Bill Morrow confirmed on Friday that if companies like TPG are allowed to cherry-pick and continue building broadband networks in the city then people in the bush may have to pay more for the NBN.

Lisa Chesters MP is extremely concerned about what this would mean for the Bendigo electorate.

When asked if NBN Co, to deal with revenues lost from cherry picking, “might need to charge more in regional areas, or get an explicit subsidy for regional Australia”, Mr Morrow said: “Yes.”

BILL MORROW – SENATE SELECT COMMITTEE ON THE NBN – 26 SEPTEMBER 2014

Two weeks ago, Mr Morrow said: “If [cherry picking] is going to happen on a larger-scale basis, then we would have to consider what that economic model does. Is there more taxpayer money that needs to be given for the remote areas to have access? Do we just say we're not going to provide the same pricing?”

BILL MORROW – COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE NBN BRIEFING – 12 SEPTEMBER 2014

Ms Chesters said under Labor’s modelling, one of the key elements of the National Broadband Network was universal wholesale pricing.

"This is now at risk because of the Government’s failure to respond to the risk posed by cherry-picking by TPG.”

Mr Morrow also said: “If TPG are allowed to do this, it begs the question whether there are other, larger carriers that are allowed to do this, and if those larger carriers come in and this becomes a material deployment issue, then the model for NBN is clearly in jeopardy.”

BILL MORROW – SENATE SELECT COMMITTEE ON THE NBN – 26 SEPTEMBER 2014

“If this happens it will be the Government’s fault. “Malcolm Turnbull needs to guarantee people in the bush will not have to pay more because of his stuff up.”