The Coalition Government’s continued investment in the highly successful Mobile Black Spot Program (MBSP) will expand mobile coverage to more rural and regional communities, with applications now open for Round 5.
Member for Parkes Mark Coulton was pleased to welcome Minister for Regional Services and Deputy Leader of The Nationals Bridget McKenzie to Dubbo today.
“With applications now open for another round of the MBSP, it is wonderful to have my friend and colleague Minister McKenzie join us today,” Mr Coulton said.
“The Government’s $160 million commitment to two new rounds of the Program in the 2019 Budget is positive news for rural and regional areas across the Parkes electorate.
“In the latest round, it was announced that the Parkes electorate will receive five new Telstra base stations at Tilpa, Silverton Exchange, Enngonia, Pimpara Lake (near Packsaddle) and Naree Station (near Yantabulla).
“Improved mobile coverage in each of these locations will help keep our businesses connected, our families to stay in touch, and it means we can better access health and online services on the go.”
Minister McKenzie said the funding for two more rounds of the MBSP lifts the Government’s total funding to $380 million.
“This commitment is proof that we are listening to regional Australians, and responding to their communications needs,” Minister McKenzie said.
“So far, our Program is funding the delivery of 1047 new base stations and generating over $760 million of new investment in mobile infrastructure. I am thrilled that we are continuing to add to these impressive figures with a further two rounds of funding.
“Round 5 will have a strong focus on improving coverage in our regions at important community centres, such as medical facilities, schools and economic hubs.”
Like previous rounds of the Program, Round 5 will encourage the mobile industry and state and local governments to work together to address mobile black spots across regional and remote Australia.
“I urge interested communities to contact the mobile network operators and state, territory and local government authorities to make their coverage issues known,” Minister McKenzie said.
Mobile network operators and infrastructure providers have until 26 July 2019 to submit their applications. Applications will be assessed through a competitive process conducted by the Department of Communications and the Arts. For more information, visit: www.communications.gov.au/mbsp