The office of Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has confirmed plans to release the National Broadband Network Company’s long-awaited business plan for public viewing from Monday.
Conroy will hold a press conference at 12 midday on Monday in Canberra, according to an invitation issued to journalists on Sunday, with the press to receive a briefing from NBN Co chief executive Mike Quigley on the document from 10:30AM on the same day.
However, as with the release of the NBN implementation study published this year and put together by consulting firms McKinsey and KPMG, Conroy’s office has prohibited the press from filming or broadcasting the private briefing, and journalists will not be able to publish information from it until midday on Monday.
The release of the business plan delivered by NBN Co to the Government late this year has been one of the more controversial points of discussion in Federal Parliament relating to the National Broadband Network and Labor’s plans for telecommunications sector reform.
After appearing to cut a deal with independent Senator Nick Xenophon earlier this year for his support for key legislative telecommunications moves, the Government published a summary of NBN Co’s business case on November 24.
However, a number of onlookers — including Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull — had been dissatisfied with the amount of detail contained in the summary. At the time of its release, Turnbull described the document as “thoroughly inadequate” and claimed it contained merely “a few scraps of information and other warm words”.
The Government has previously stated the document would be released after commercially sensitive or in-confidence information had been removed and after Federal Cabinet had been briefed on its contents.
iTWire has reported that the Government had needed to consider the corporate plan, in addition, before it released its formal response to the Implementation Study released earlier this year. With the two documents and the Government’s response on the public record, a much clearer picture will be able to be drawn about just how Labor’s NBN policy will be implemented over the coming years.