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How do Labor and the Coalition differ on NBN policy?

Rod Tucker writes in The Conversation (13.6.16) about the policies of the major political parties regarding the National Broadband Network (NBN), released in the latter part of the federal election campaign.

‘As hinted in earlier announcements by Shadow Communications Minister, Jason Clare, Labor’s much-anticipated policy for the National Broadband Network released Monday commits the party – if elected – to move away from the Coalition’s fibre to the node (FTTN) network and transition back to a roll-out of fibre to the premises (FTTP). This was the central pillar of Labor’s original NBN.

‘The FTTN roll-out will be phased out as soon as current design and construction contracts are completed.

‘This is a major shift away from the Coalition’s focus on FTTN technologies, which was a key part of their election platform in 2013. After a number of delays, FTTN equipment is now being rolled out around Australia.

‘ … The NBN has been a key issue in the past two elections, so will Labor’s new policy be a vote winner? The policy to move back to FTTP provides a clear differentiation from the Coalition’s FTTN-centric strategy.

‘Many Australians recognise the importance of super-fast broadband as a driver of innovation in the digital economy, and will no doubt think of this on July 2.’

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