The Australian Government is inviting expressions of interest for project funding, in a bid to improve broadband access in regional areas.
The funding is available through the $23.7 million Coordinated Communications Infrastructure Fund (CCIF), according to a statement issued today by Daryl Williams, Minister for Communications, IT and the Arts.
Projects which are successful in obtaining funding under the CCIF would need at least matching contributions from sources outside the Australian Government, according to the statement.
Health or education service providers; community groups; telco carriers; service providers; and state, territory or local governments were used as examples of partnerships that might apply for funding. Expressions of interest need to be submitted by 1 December.
'Education and health service providers in regional areas might wish to enhance the range of services they could offer locally, via broadband,' said the statement from Williams' office. 'These are the kinds of projects that can dramatically improve technological access and online services for Australians in regional areas.'
'Following the Regional Telecommunications Inquiry, the Australian Government committed $142.8 million to the action plan of the National Broadband Strategy,' it stated. 'The CCIF is one element of the National Broadband Strategy action plan, which has been developed by the National Broadband Strategy Implementation Group.'