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Nick Minchin

Liberal Senator for South Australia

Nick Minchin


Senator the Hon Nick Minchin

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Labor Must Stop Reckless NBN Spending Until Cost-Benefit Analysis CompletedEmail this pageBack

Friday, 30 October 2009 Printer Friendly Version

The Coalition’s calls for a full cost-benefit analysis on Labor’s reckless $43 billion NBN Mark II project have been fully vindicated by the Productivity Commission's criticisms of the Government's approach, Shadow Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy Senator Nick Minchin said today.

“This vindicates the Opposition’s consistent calls for a cost-benefit analysis since the day Labor announced this ill-conceived $43 billion NBN project,” Senator Minchin said.

“The Government should stop its reckless spending on the NBN until a full cost-benefit analysis is completed, in line with its own promises.”

The Productivity Commission's 2008-09 Annual Report highlights the fact that the Rudd Government has dismally failed to meet its own standards by refusing to subject the NBN proposal to a detailed cost-benefit analysis.

“ … the decision to build a National Broadband Network, although endorsed by Infrastructure Australia, was not based on a detailed cost-benefit analysis,” the PC noted.

This is despite the fact that: “The Government has affirmed that efficient public investment in infrastructure requires application of detailed cost-benefit analysis and transparency at all stages of the decision making process.”

“Infrastructure investments that are not well-allocated can impose a double burden: with future generations having lower incomes than otherwise, while still needing to service the debt incurred in financing such assets.”

The Productivity Commission's criticisms follow similar strong criticism of the Rudd Government by the Business Council of Australia in its recently released report ‘Groundwork for Growth’, which also called for a full cost-benefit analysis of the NBN proposal.

“The Rudd Government must stop any further spending on its NBN, and subject the proposal to detailed objective analysis to establish whether or not the spending of billions of taxpayer dollars on this single project will deliver commensurate benefits,” Senator Minchin said.

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