National Farmers' Federation

Location options to be considered as part of fresh round of mobile black spot funding

The Regional, Rural and Remote Communications Coalition has welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement that it will soon identify location options for the next round of mobile black spot funding.
Today Minister for Regional Services, Bridget McKenzie declared open nominations from local and state governments, as well as Federal politicians, for Round Four of the $220 million Mobile Black Spot Program.
NSW Farmers’ Association President, James Jackson said certainty of mobile coverage remained the number one telecommunication issue for farmers.
“It is vital to the growth and prosperity of the agriculture sector and regional Australia as a whole.
“We encourage local and state Governments along with Federal MPs to consult with, and listen to, farmers when finalising their recommendations for new base stations.”
“Farmers require reliable connectivity if they are to drive the growth of the agriculture sector to $100 billion by 2030.”
National Farmers’ Federation President, Fiona Simson, said reopening the black spot database was an important step in continuing the expansion of mobile coverage in Australia.
“We were delighted when Round 4 was announced earlier this year. The Program puts infrastructure on the ground and expands the mobile coverage footprint.
“Mobile coverage is a key priority for our members which was reinforced in our recent submission to the Regional Telecommunications Review.”
Teresa Corbin, CEO of Australian Communications Action Network (ACCAN) said she didn’t anticipate that there would be any shortage of demand for black spot programs across the nation.
“We know that mobile coverage is a key issue for consumers, particularly those who live in regional, rural, and remote areas.
“We will be encouraging mobile networks to participate in the program and invest in their rural, regional and remote customers.”
Round Four of the Mobile Black Spot Program is targeting medical, education and emergency services facilities as well as key transport routes.
The Regional, Rural and Remote Communications Coalition is a group of like-minded organisations who have come together to end the data drought and to champion better communications services for consumers and small businesses living in rural, remote or regional areas.

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