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Thoughts on Vertigan’s NBN Cost Benefit Analysis

The cost-benefit analysis on the NBN has highlighted that, beyond a certain speed, there are no incremental benefits derived from faster broadband.

The assumptions on that speed, plus those around people’s willingness to pay, are central to the findings of the NBN cost benefit analysis delivered by the Vertigan panel and made public this week.

This week on Crosstalk we discuss those assumptons with Guy Cranswick, advisor to IBRS and Richard Denniss, executive director at the Australia institute. We ask, despite Malcolm Turnbull deriding the Labor party for not providing one, whether it really adds much to the equation – the fundamental premise had already been argued rigorously by the Communications Minister.

The only surprise is that the findings show that the net benefit declines when the non-fixed footprint is factored in. The rational conclusion would be to forget about the last 7 percent of the population. Another alternative, discussed with Dan Lloyd, director of strategy and corporate affairs at Vodafone, is to share the costs from other providers trying to reach the same households.

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