Paul Fletcher MP

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Thursday, 09 August 2012 00:00

AFR: NBN hoplelessly behind targets

When Stephen Conroy and Kevin Rudd announced the NBN in April 2009, they promised that it would be “operated on a commercial basis… and involve private sector investment.”  

In mid-2010 Conroy abandoned the commitment to private sector investment – after receiving advice in the McKinsey-KPMG Implementation Study that private investors would regard the project as too risky and hence taxpayers would need to provide one hundred per cent of the equity.

Sunday, 22 July 2012 10:00

AFR: ACCC fails to push for competition

You expect a competition regulator to make decisions that promote competition. Last week the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission did the opposite, approving a deal between Optus and the government-owned NBN Co, under which NBN Co will pay Optus $100 million and Optus will cease serving customers on its cable broadband network.

Sunday, 20 May 2012 10:00

AFR: Unions and the Super Conundrum

The Fair Work Australia report into the Health Services Union reveals a union culture in which normal standards of governance are largely ignored. But it is not just union members whoare affected. There is a direct link between unions and the superannuation savings of millions of Australians. The deeply flawed governance arrangements put in place by the Keating government allow union officials a privileged place in running super funds.

Labor has fallen far short of its lofty ambition.

Stephen Conroy's Five Years of Broadband Failure

From Federal Liberal MP Paul Fletcher

Superannuation Minister Bill Shorten was dismissive of recent comments by Tony Abbott about corporate governance in the superannuation sector: "He only shows an interest in super when he uses it to chase union bogeymen."

JULIA Gillard told the parliament yesterday that her government had achieved the structural separation of Telstra. That is a deeply misleading statement. Far from separation being achieved, all that has happened is that the Australian Competition 8z.

 THE signs of Israel’s perpetual struggle for survival can be quite easy to overlook. Yes, there is the security grilling before you board the El Al flight and the circuitous flight path, around Arab countries so as to overfly water all the way to Eilat at the very southern tip of Israel.


A striking feature of the Rudd-Gillard Government’s NBN policy – to spend over $50 billion of taxpayers’ money on a 100 Mbps fibre to the premises network serving over 10 million premises – is the lack of clarity about the problem this policy is designed to solve. In this article I argue that the NBN was announced for political reasons rather than policy reasons.

After briefly explaining that point, the paper then discusses the policy issues – by identifying and assessing several 'candidate problems' that NBN might be thought to be designed to address, and argues that the policy as is presently being pursued is not a good solution to any of these.

The paper concludes with some suggestions for a more sensible approach.

To spend tens of billions of dollars to build a telecommunications network – without knowing how much you can charge customers to use the network – is an extremely risky move. But that is what NBN Co is doing. NBN Co has announced the prices it plans to charge.

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Authorised by Paul Fletcher MP, Level 2, 280 Pacific Highway Lindfield NSW 2070.

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