Conroy to hold midday NBN report press lockup


update The office of Communications Minister Stephen Conroy will today exclusively reveal the contents of the controversial National Broadband Implementation study to the Canberra press gallery in a budget-style lock-up lasting from 12 midday to 1:30pm.

Multiple sources confirmed the timing, although the Minister’s office has not returned calls or emails asking for confirmation that a budget-style press lock-up would be held today. It is unclear which news outlets have been invited to the lock-up and which have not — Delimiter has not been invited.

According to an email invite to the event seen by Delimiter after this article was first posted and issued to press at 9:16AM this morning, the briefing will be run by McKinsey partner Angus Dawson, the lead advisor on the report.

Invited press will receive a briefing about the report, as well as having time to read it and quiz the powers that be in a question and answer session. The event will be held in Parliament House’s Main Committe Room.

“No cameras, recording devices or mobiles phones will be permitted in this briefing and reporting will be embargoed until 1:30pm. Laptops will be allowed in but you are asked not to bring wireless cards or to disable remote wireless,” the invite states. “Reporting of the Implementation Study is embargoed until 1:30pm.”

The Minister has been promising to release the report for six weeks, but only this week confirmed that the report’s release was imminent.

According to its original brief, the implementation study — which runs to 500 pages — will determine the operating arrangements for the NBN Company, as well as detailing network design and financial details — for example, attracting private sector investment. It was put together by consulting firms KPMG and McKinsey.

However, since NBN Co chief executive Mike Quigley came on board last year, the company has already taken action on a number of fronts which the tender documents mentioned would be covered by the implementation study — such as key decisions on network design. The NBN Co has also kickstarted various procurement processes associated with the NBN buildout.

Greens Senator Scott Ludlam had threatened to pull the party’s support for the Federal Government’s controversial telecommunications reform legislation due to Stephen Conroy’s decision to not yet release the National Broadband Implementation study during the last Senate sitting.

Further news as it comes.

Image credit: Office of Stephen Conroy