Joint with Stephen Jones MP, Shadow Minister for Regional Communications.
Following a Productivity Commission review which commenced in June 2016, a USO taskforce, and two and a half years having elapsed, Mitch Fifield has today re-announced an acronym to describe existing safeguards for the delivery of phone and broadband services.
NBNCo already has a universal service delivery obligation for broadband via its Statement of Expectations, and Telstra has a USO obligation for delivery of voice services.
Coming up with a new acronym – the Universal Service Guarantee (USG) — to describe what is already there does not constitute progress.
The Government has also failed to offer any views on the future relationship between the USO levy and its proposed regional broadband levy.
This latest development is simply an in-tray clearing exercise by a Minister who has given up on governing.