Turnbull: Nearly 110,000 homes waiting for NBN fibre

NBN Co failing to fulfil its duty to greenfield sites, according to Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull said nearly 110,000 households in greenfield estates are on the NBN Co waiting list to receive fibre connections.

The shadow minister for communications and broadband also claimed less than 1000 premises received a fibre connection in new housing developments, compared to 35,000 connections to the copper network by Telstra.

“As at 31 December 2011 there were 109,988 premises in greenfields estates on the NBN Co waiting list,” he said.

“Nothing could more clearly demonstrate the disastrous nature of the NBN Co’s decision to take over the provision of fibre installations in greenfields sites.”

Turnbull claimed the move by NBN Co is not meeting targets and the decision for it to primarily install fibre has undermined private sector fibre providers.

“The failure to provide fibre to so many new homes is a direct consequence of Senator Conroy’s blind prejudice against the private sector providing fibre connections in greenfields developments,” Turnbull said.

However, Sentor Stephen Conroy, minister for broadband, communications and the digital economy, has hit back.

“As part of the package of agreements reached with Telstra in June 2011, Telstra retained responsibility for laying copper in new estates where development approval was granted prior to 1 January 2011,” he said in a statement.

“Telstra also agreed to lay copper in all developments of less than 100 premises.”

As part of the agreement, Telstra was responsible for copper connections in 35,000 greenfield lots.

“Under Government policy, copper is an interim solution. All greenfields premises will receive fibre to the home as the NBN is progressively rolled out,” Conroy said.

“Turnbull's claim that there were 109,988 premises in greenfields estates on the NBN Co “waiting list” is also completely misleading.”

Conroy said the nearly 110,000 premises mentioned by Turnbull are homes registered with NBN Co and have not yet even been completed.

“Many of these premises may not be built for years - NBN Co works to provide connections when they are needed,” Conroy said.

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