Information about the Inquiry
On 25 June 2008, the Senate established the Select Committee on the National Broadband Network (NBN) to inquire into and report on the government's proposal to partner with the private sector to upgrade parts of the existing network to fibre to provide minimum broadband speeds of 12 megabits per second to 98 per cent of Australian homes and businesses on an open access basis.
On 7 April 2009, the Rudd Government announced that it had terminated the previous Request for Proposals process, replacing it with an initiative that would see 90 per cent of Australian homes, workplaces and schools with fibre-to-the-premise, connecting all other premises in Australia with next generation wireless and satellite technologies, ensuring every Australian house, school and workplace can access fast affordable broadband.
Consequently, on 14 May 2009, the Senate revised the terms of appointment of this committee, refecting the change in the government's policy direction and allowing the committee to effectively continue and complete its inquiry into the National Broadband Network.
The Committee has now provided four interim reports to the Senate, dated 2 December 2008, 12 May 2009, 26 November 2009 and 18 May 2010.
Most recent report of the committee
The committee's most recent interim report, its Fourth Interim Report, was presented to the Senate out of session on 18 May 2010.
The Fourth Interim Report comprehensively assessed the progress on the National Broadband Network, including consideration of exposure drafts of legislation establishing arrangements for the ownership, operations, access obligations and services of the NBN Company.
The latest report is available at: http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/broadband_ctte/interim4-report/report.pdf.
Current work of the committee
Paragraph 2A of the committee's revised terms of reference requires the committee to
examine the findings of the National Broadband Network Implementation Study, the Government's response to the Implementation Study and any subsequent implications of that report for the National Broadband Network policy. .
The Implementation Study referred to in Paragraph 2A is a document provided to the Government by its Lead Advisor, a consortium of McKinsey & Co and KPMG, as to how the Government's National Broadband Network policy might be implemented.
The Government received the Implementation Study on 5 March 2010. However it did not release the document publicly until 6 May 2010. It is now available at: http://www.dbcde.gov.au/broadband/national_broadband_network/national_broadband_network_implementation_study
On 12 May 2010, the Senate agreed to extend the committee's reporting date to 17 June 2010 to enable the committee to properly examine and publicly consult on the Implementation Study.
The committee is seeking further submissions, in particular in relation to the recently-released Implementation Study, which should be lodged at firstname.lastname@example.org by 27 May 2010.
The committee held a public hearing on 20 May 2010 and will hold a further hearing in Canberra on 4 June 2010.
The committee is due to make its final report to the Senate by 17 June 2010
For further information, contact:
Senior Clerk's Office
Department of the Senate
PO Box 6100
Canberra ACT 2600