Joint media release
Senator Louise Pratt
Duty Senator for Durack
Senator Glenn Sterle
Duty Senator for O'Connor
Senator the Hon Stephen Conroy
Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Digital Productivity
Three NBN Satellite Ground Stations for Western Australia to create up to 90 jobs
The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, and Western Australian Senators Louise Pratt and Glenn Sterle, today announced that Western Australia will be home to three National Broadband Network (NBN) satellite ground stations that will provide fast, reliable and affordable broadband to rural and remote Australia.
The ground stations will be built and operated in Moonyoonooka near Geraldton, Binduli near Kalgoorlie, and Carnarvon. They are three of ten satellite ground stations that are being constructed to operate the NBN’s long-term satellite service that will start in 2015.
"These ground stations will bring jobs to the local economies and act as essential NBN satellite gateways, helping deliver fast, affordable, and reliable broadband to rural and remote communities across Australia," Senator Conroy said.
"For too long, people living in rural and regional Australia have had to live with second class telecommunications infrastructure, but through the Gillard Government's investment in the NBN all Australians will have access to fast, reliable and affordable broadband.
"Like water and electricity, the Gillard Government sees fast broadband as an essential utility that should be made available to all Australians, no matter where they live.
"The construction of these ground stations will help create around 90 direct jobs in these local communities, with building set to begin early next year,” Senator Pratt said.
"The rollout of the NBN in Western Australia is ramping up with fibre construction already commenced for 56,900 homes and businesses and the NBN on target to have construction commenced or completed for 429,200 premises by mid-2015.
"People in Geraldton can already connect to the NBN via a fixed wireless service. One customer has said that with the NBN, ‘we’re paying a lot less to get a faster and better service – it’s wonderful’.[i] More than 1,700 Western Australians have also signed up to the NBN’s interim satellite service.”
“From seeing your local doctor from home, to your kids being able to take a specialist class at another school – the NBN will change the way we live, work, and access services.”
Senator Sterle said: "The Government is also delivering uniform national wholesale pricing through the NBN, which means West Australians in towns like Geraldton, Kalgoorlie and Carnarvon will pay the same prices for NBN services as people in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne.
"The NBN will deliver tremendous economic and social benefits to rural and regional communities by reducing the need for people in rural and remote towns to travel to get specialist services."
The three satellite ground stations in Western Australia, join three other ground stations announced for Bourke and Merimbula in New South Wales, and Geeveston in Tasmania.
Date: 1 October 2012
Contact: Adam Sims (Senator Conroy’s Office) 0408 258 457
Allana Clohesy (Senator Pratt’s Office) 0438 288 479
Senator Sterle’s Office - 08 9455 1420
[i] First on Wireless, Geraldton Guardian, p 10, 12 Sep 2012.