HDD, Markets, Telecommunications

Board changes expected for NBN Co

The interim statement will guide NBN Co’s construction and operational activities pending changes to the Board and while a strategic review and independent audit of the project are carried out and while a new NBN Co corporate plan is drafted.

The interim statement instructs NBN Co to continue to roll out the network as rapidly and as cost effectively as possible throughout this process. In the short term, the interim statement will see NBN Co meet its contractual obligations by continuing to roll out fibre to the premises while the company conducts the strategic review of the project.

NBN Co has recently advised Government that it is proposing to revise its rollout target for premises passed by fibre by 30 June 2014 down by almost half from the forecast made four months ago in June. The interim statement provides NBN Co with the flexibility to use a wider range of technologies to connect businesses and homes to the network.

Mr Turnbull said it is the Coalition’s goal following the completion of the review and a new corporate plan to see NBN Co set realistic rollout targets and then consistently deliver on them.

The Age recently reported that board members of NBN Co have offered to resign en masse.

The chairwoman, Siobhan McKenna, has submitted her resignation to Mr Turnbull, along with the rest of the board, The Age said.

The resignations have not yet been accepted by Mr Turnbull, with a decision to be made at a cabinet meeting early next month, The Age reported.

The potential board changes are the latest upheaval for Australia’s largest infrastructure project.

According to The Age, NBN Co will switch from a fibre-to-the-home network to the cheaper fibre-to-the-node, which will require changes to contracts and relationships with contractors, Telstra and other networks.

It will require a renegotiation of the Telstra/NBN deal to arrange copper access and compensation as well as redesigning the rollout.

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