Turnbull, Hockey should say sorry for NBN claims: Conroy

Communications minister denied Coalition claims that the NBN will cost up to $100 billion.

Communications minister Stephen Conroy asked his opposition to apologise for what he called “outrageous claims” that the NBN will cost up to $100 billion.

Shadow communications minister Malcom Turnbull and shadow treasurer Joe Hockey “have claimed that the cost could be as high as $100 billion". “This is false and inaccurate," Controy said.

“The Government released the 2012-2015 NBN Co Corporate Plan provided by the NBN Co Board on 8 August. That plan stated the capital cost of the NBN will be $37.4 billion.

"The NBN Co Corporate Plan is informed by the agreement with Telstra and signed construction contracts. The Corporate Plan was prepared by the experienced executives of NBN Co, and was approved by the highly qualified independent NBN Co Board.

“Mr Hockey's and Mr Turnbull's outrageous claims effectively accuse the NBN Co executive and board of being negligent in their duty. This is a disgraceful slur on NBN Co. They should apologise immediately and stop misleading the Australian public."

In a blog entry dated 6 September, Turnbull wrote that he made the estimate based on the advice of industry.

“I have been careful not to nominate a particular sum of money as the difference between what we would do and Labor’s current plan,” Turnbull wrote. “For a start there is enormous scepticism that the NBN Co project can be completed within the cost and time-frame of their business plan.

“Several very experienced civil contractors and engineers have said to us recently that they think the actual build cost is likely to be $80 to $100 billion for example.”

The Conroy statement is the latest volley in an ongoing spat between Labor and the Coalition over the NBN. Turnbull recently provided more details on the Coalition's alternative NBN.

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Comments

Francis Young

1

Malcolm Turnbull's credibility does not hinge on whether he can compare the NBNCo project cost to his own, but upon whether he will ever reveal his August 2012 costings for his own fully-costed alternative plan.

You say you costed it, so let's have your numbers, Mr Turnbull, or was it more expensive than the $12 billion cost of laying future-proof fibre to 93% of premises?

Abel Adamski

2

Who are these Experts, are they accountable for their statements ?
What vested interests do they have ?
We already had one very vested interest expert out himself on Computerworld

Psssh

3

Not sure Sen Conroy has much cred on financial matters just look at the cost blow outs already with his plaything. Maybe should stick to the red underwear and leave the accounting to others.

HUH

4

@3 unlike Hockey who really really should leave all accounting and indeeed anything relating to maths to someone else , Conroy did have someone else do all the figures, in fact the figures have been reviewed a number of times now.

So I find you post somewhat inaccurate.

I have not seen the figures leap up in the last 3 years, in fact the normal price creep over any contract life thats over a longer time frame than 3 years is expected.

Thus far creep has been very low, and would of been lower if not for all the tactics Telstra were deploying as per the norm, and even this 7 month delay was cited as the reason for the extra cash, so all in all I am seeing a distinct disconnect in Psssh post due to a lack of research or delibrate FUDing.

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