The Coalition Government’s $60 million investment in Round 2 of the Mobile Black Spot Program will deliver another 266 new and upgraded mobile base stations in regional Australia, covering some 1,400 black spots.
The Prime Minister, the Minister for Regional Communications, Senator the Hon Fiona Nash, and the Minister for Communications, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, announced the outcome of Round 2 of the Program in Canberra today.
The new and upgraded base stations will deliver improved mobile coverage across 17,700 square kilometres, as well as 1,900 kilometres of major transport routes, and cover some 6,300 homes and businesses.
The Coalition Government’s $60 million investment under Round 2 has leveraged a total investment of $213 million, including funding from state and local governments, mobile network operators (Telstra, Optus, Vodafone), businesses and community organisations.
The Coalition is investing $220 million in Commonwealth funds across three funding rounds of the Mobile Black Spot Program ($100 million for round 1, $60 million for each of rounds 2 and 3).
There is a broad national spread of new and upgraded base stations across NSW (39), Victoria (32), Queensland (76), Western Australia (78), South Australia (20), Tasmania (6) and Northern Territory (15).
The Round 2 outcome builds on the success of Round 1 of the Mobile Black Spot Program, which is already delivering 499 new and upgraded base stations, covering some 3,000 black spots.
The combined impact of Round 1 and Round 2 means that 4,400 black spots will be covered of the 10,000 black spots nominated by the public.
The Coalition Government has also committed to Round 3 of the Mobile Black Spot Program. The competitive process for Round 3 locations is expected to commence in early 2017.
There has been strong community demand for improved mobile coverage in regional and remote Australia – but the previous Labor government failed to allocate a single dollar of public money to address this problem.
By contrast, the Coalition Government continues to work hard to improve mobile services in regional and remote Australia, and today’s announcement shows that this commitment will continue.
A map of locations which will receive new or upgraded coverage under rounds 1 and 2 of the Mobile Black Spot Program is available from www.nationalmap.gov.au.
Information about the Mobile Black Spot Program can be found at www.communications.gov.au/mbsp