Vic govt to sink $73m into NBN area switches, business upgrades

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Vic govt to sink $73m into NBN area switches, business upgrades

To be pursued under the state's 'Connecting Victoria' program.

The Victorian government will co-invest $73 million into upgrades to parts of the NBN in the state.

The funds “will be used to partner with NBN Co on upgrades to business connectivity, regional connectivity for communities served by fixed wireless and satellite services, and fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) to fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) … area flips.”

On the residential side, “the funding from the Victorian government will be combined with funds from NBN Co to enhance national broadband network infrastructure through an area switch available under NBN Co’s technology change program,” federal communications minister Paul Fletcher said in a statement.

NBN Co will draw from a $300 million pot of money set aside for co-investment in regional residential service upgrades, or from a separate $50 million pot for the extension of business-grade services.

The state government will draw its funds from a $550 million scheme called ‘Connecting Victoria’ which aims to “fast-track better mobile coverage and broadband across the state.”

NBN Co’s chief executive Stephen Rue said the network operator is “delighted to work with the Victorian government to identify opportunities to co-invest in the development and delivery of new NBN infrastructure to support the Connecting Victoria program.”

Rue said tha the Victorian government is “the first to seize the opportunity” presented by NBN Co’s regional co-investment scheme, which was unveiled last year as part of a multi-billion dollar program of upgrades.

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