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Developers To Pay For NBN

The Australian Government has released a policy update paper on the installation of telecommunications infrastructure in new developments.  This paper is available for download at:

http://www.communications.gov.au/broadband/telecommunications_regulatory_reform

Clients are strongly advised to read this paper - or at least the Overview in Section 1. While the present proposals have not yet been formally adopted, major changes are not expected. The new policies will commence on 1 March 2015. Major impacts will be:

  • NBN Co will charge  $600 per lot for fibre installation.
  • The developer will also be required to pay 50% of the cost of installing backhaul, up to $500 per lot, where the distance exceeds 1 km. If the total cost exceeds $1000 per lot, the developer will have to pay 100% of that excess.
  • These charges will be additional to the cost of installation of pipe and pit, for which the developer will continue to be responsible.
  • Because NBN will not longer be fully subsidised by the Government, other network providers will become more competitive. Developers will be able to choose the network provider who offers them the best deal. 
  • Other network providers might be cheaper, but their services or their method of service delivery might differ from those of NBN. Developers must select their network provider at an early stage.
  • Different design and construction models will no doubt become available, ranging from the present arrangement, whereby seperate entities design and construct pit/pipe and fibre, to a packaged deal, in which a single entity does the lot.

One thing does stand out: Developers will be well advised to lodge applications with NBN Co before 1 March 2015.  After that, the new charges will apply. However it is expected that a penalty will apply if the pit and pipe is not completed within a nominated period. So this is something that we shall watch closely and keep you informed.