Landlines still  vital in a mobile world 

NSW Farmers welcomes the Australian Government and Telstra’s commitment to regional and rural communities with today’s announcement of a dedicated program of work to improve the reliability of landlines. 

The announcement delivers on a recommendation from the 2018 Regional Telecommunications Review: Getting it right out there report that highlights the necessity of a high quality landline services to overcome the challenges that distance poses to the delivery of quality digital connectivity across regional Australia.

NSW Farmers President James Jackson said a key area of frustration voiced by members during the Regional Telecommunications Review consultation was the continuing deterioration of landline services. 

“Our members continue to experience deterioration, of which many reported wiring infrastructure was the first cause, followed by voice quality.  Without significant ongoing commitment to invest in the current landline infrastructure and service, farmers will be left behind,” Mr Jackson said. 

“Telstra’s program of work is and support from the Australian Government is the first step in addressing the current connectivity inequalities faced by many in regional, rural and remote Australia.”

The program of work will include repairing and replacement of around 1000 joints cables, moving 350 customers off the ageing HCRC network onto NextG Wireless Local Loop (NGWL) telephone services and around 200 battery replacements in exchange and roadside cabinets where mains power failures are more frequent. 

“It is vital that Telstra actually delivers on these commitments to bolster their service - to repair, replace and reduce time delays experienced by many when using a landline,” said Mr Jackson. 

Mr Jackson said NSW Farmers looks forward to updates from Telstra on the program’s progress and success.

“Regional and rural Australia deserve a fast and fantastic digital service to support all enterprises and operations that will contribute to the agricultural sector’s projected growth of $100billion by 2030.” 

“To reach this goal, it will require the elimination of all challenges and limitations across the telecommunications sector.”

Date:  Wednesday 13 March 2019
Media Contact:   Michael Burt  | 0428 228 988