Regional telecommunications silence criticised

Photo: Rob Homer.
Photo: Rob Homer.

The Nationals deputy leader and Regional Services Minister Bridget McKenzie has criticised the Labor Party for still not having released a regional telecommunications policy, despite the federal election less than three weeks away.

Minister McKenzie said Labor did not understand regional Australia.and criticised the party for being "unable" to release their policy.

"No one living in regional or rural Australia should believe Labor when it comes to better communications," she said.

"Under the Liberal and Nationals Government, $380 million has been committed to the Mobile Black Spot Program to improve mobile coverage and competition across Australia.

"This includes $160 million in new funding for rounds five and six of this highly successful program, announced on March 20, 2019."

A spokesperson for O'Connor Labor candidate Shelley Payne said the party would deliver all planned mobile black spot towers in O'Connor, and would be releasing their policy agenda for regional communications shortly.

"From their second-rate copper NBN, to bungling of mobile black spots delivery, the Coalition cannot be trusted when it comes to regional communications," the spokesperson said.

"As it stands, 31 black spot towers promised by the Coalition after the 2013 election are yet to be delivered, and a further 71 of the 102 towers promised as 2016 election commitments are also incomplete."

The election will be held on May 18. Early voting starts today, April 29.