Improving mobile phone coverage and upgrading our NBN

Improving mobile phone coverage and upgrading our NBN Main Image

06 April 2022

Reliable, quality, high speed internet and mobile phone reception are not luxury items or a nice-to-haves — they are essential 21st century economic infrastructure.

Families need proper mobile coverage and reliable, fast connections for school and work; small businesses and entrepreneurs need it to stay competitive; and regional communities like those across Eden-Monaro need it for all those reasons, and as a matter of safety.

That’s why an Albanese Labor Government has a plan to make the NBN faster and more reliable, and will invest to address mobile blackspots in Eden-Monaro.  

Our plan will see over 18,000 homes and businesses in Eden-Monaro gain access to world-class fibre connectivity. This will be rolled out across the region including but not limited to Jerrabomberra, Eden, Merimbula, Bungendore, Bega, Pambula and Dalmeny.

This is part of an Albanese Labor Government’s broader plan to invest $2.4 billion to expand Fibre to the Premises access to a further 1.5 million premises.

Mobile blackspots have always been an issue across Eden-Monaro, but the Black Summer Bushfires showed the serious safety implications of unreliable mobile phone reception.  

As part of the region’s recovery, Member for Eden-Monaro Kristy McBain has been advocating for more investment in fixing blackspots.

An Albanese Labor Government will commit a further $2 million, on top of the existing $5 million by-election commitment, to improve mobile coverage in areas including but not limited to:

  • $3.5 Million to address some blackspots along the Princes Highway from Ulladulla to Eden.
  • $1 Million to improve coverage along the Kings Highway
  • $1 Million to improve coverage along the Monaro Highway
  • $1 Million to improve coverage along the Snowy Mountains Highway
  • Plus $2.5 million for improved mobile coverage in Carwoola, Wee Jasper, Talbingo, Dalmeny and Mystery Bay and $250,000 for a small cell in Majors Creek.

It continues to baffle me that we can travel to towns as little as 20 kilometres away from Parliament House, like Carwoola, and mobile coverage is still unacceptable.

Everywhere I travel in Eden-Monaro I hear the same message – that our communications infrastructure is patchy, dangerous and incredibly frustrating.

When the pandemic hit and people were forced to work and learn from home, I was inundated with people telling me that their slow and unreliable internet access made this impossible.

I am so pleased to be able to announce this package and start the journey in bringing our mobile coverage and NBN access in line with our capital cities.