Consultation open on funding of regional telecommunication services

Feedback will ensure the delivery of efficient, sustainable funding of non-commercial telecommunications services in Australia.

The Government is currently considering options to modernise delivery of universal telecommunications services.

This consultation on future arrangements to support funding of universal services is complementary to the first round of consultation, which closed in March.

Feedback from this consultation will inform consideration of future funding arrangements which are fit-for-purpose and deliver the best outcome for regional Australians.

A range of funding mechanisms currently contribute to the funding of non-commercial fixed voice and fixed broadband services, including a $100 million annual contribution from the Government, the RBS and the Telecommunications Industry Levy (TIL).

A number of issues have been raised by stakeholders regarding the operation of the RBS and the TIL.

The current review will provide an opportunity to consider these funding arrangements more broadly as well as opportunities to improve the operation of arrangements.

The discussion paper released today also enables public consultation for a policy review of the operation of the Regional Broadband Scheme (RBS) legislation under the Telecommunications (Consumer Protection and Service Standards) Act 1999.

An interactive map has also been created that will allow users to gain a good understanding of Universal Service Obligation services in their area, along with NBN Co's platforms and mobile coverage.

Consultation closes at 5pm on Tuesday 14 May 2024.

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