MEDIA RELEASE - ONE YEAR LATER: COMMUNICATIONS POLICY STILL ON A ROAD TO NOWHERE UNDER THE LIBERALS - 14 DECEMBER 2018

A year ago today, Labor warned communications policy is on a road to nowhere under the Liberals because the Government’s communications policy roadmap, commenced in 2016, had not been consulted on or released by late 2017.

In late 2018, there’s still no sign of it.

In response to Question on Notice No 62 released yesterday afternoon, it was stated that the reason the Minister requested a roadmap was “To present the Government’s priorities and achievements in relation to the communications sector” and that “The roadmap is under development”.

Little wonder the roadmap continues to languish when the ‘priorities and achievements’ of this dysfunctional Liberal-National Government include:

  • building a second-rate copper NBN that costs more and does less;
  • missing deadline after deadline for delivery of the spectrum reforms;
  • stalling the passage of an omnibus deregulation Bill that has been hanging around for years;
  • reannouncing an acronym to describe existing safeguards for the delivery of phone and broadband services; and
  • failing to overhaul the regulatory framework for media and communications, which successive Chairs of the ACMA have referred to as ‘strained’, broken’ and ‘irrelevant’.

Now in its sixth year in office, this Government has failed to articulate a genuine vision, strategy or roadmap to address challenges and harness opportunities in the communications sector.

As other countries implement and refine plans to reap the benefits of communications-based transformation, Australia remains stuck on Groundhog Day.

On the eve of 2019, it is clear the ATM Government has nothing to guide the Department, regulator or sector.

Australia cannot afford another term of this dysfunctional Government and do-nothing Minister.