25 September 2023

Rural telco users urged to speak up

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The Department of Communications and the Arts has called on telecommunications users in regional, rural or remote parts of Australia to contribute their experiences to a review.

As part of its 2018 Regional Telecommunications Review, the Department has released an issues paper.

It said a Regional Telecommunications Independent Review Committee was established every three years to undertake a review of telecommunications services in regional, rural and remote Australia.

“With online services now increasingly essential for everyday tasks, the Committee wants to get a comprehensive understanding of any issues communities are facing, and the opportunities for maximising the benefits of communications services in regional Australia,” the Department said.

It said many Government, business and retail services were provided online and there was a need to better understand the telecommunications landscape for people living and working in regional areas, and to examine what was needed in the future.

“While there are still some challenges to connecting with essential Government and business services in regional Australia, the telecommunications market in Australia has transformed in the past three years,” the Department said.

“The NBN rollout is progressing faster in the regions than in the cities.”

It said these services are either already available or the infrastructure was under construction for 92 per cent of all homes and businesses outside major urban areas.

The Committee will report to the Minister for Regional Communications by 30 September.

Submissions should be made by 5 August and the 20-page issues paper can be accessed at this PS News link.

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