NBN Tax Costing Consumers Up to $60 Million Annually

September 14, 2017

Prices are on the rise in Australia as a new tax has been making it towards turning into a reality. Dubbed as the “NBN tax”, this newly proposed tax will be able to get up to $60 million more from consumers just for them to access the internet.

And this new tax was not welcomed with open arms.

Critics of the said tax have claimed this as “another attempt” to fix the National Broadband Network (NBN) with more money that they can take from consumers even though service providers say that this should be delayed up to next year. Moreover, Aussies are already paying their taxes once connected to the NBN, so the charges that should make the NBN better should know come from inside.

Unfortunately, the senate committee that took a look at the broadband tax set aside the concerns of users and even pushed it to become a law. The committee said it was convinced by “counterpoints made by the Department [of Communications] and NBN Co to industry arguments” and even described the government’s side of the story “more compelling.”

Once the proposed Regional Broadband Scheme is made into a reality, consumers will now have to pay an additional $85.20 per year for their services, and will eventually shoot up to $96 in 2020.

However, there are still exceptions to the rule. Internet providers that currently have less than 25,000 users and the ones being “transitioned” to the NBN are eligible for the exemptions.

Beware consumers who are capable of downloading 25 megabit-per-second for these are the ones who are eligible for the additional charges.

Federal Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher said this NBN tax is designed to help the NBN on its regional broadband services, which are being foreseen to reach $9.8 billion after 30 years.

“The money collected from the base component of the charge would be used to fund the losses NBN Co incurs in constructing and operating its fixed wireless and satellite networks,” Mr Fletcher said.

“Once established, the Regional Broadband Scheme will provide certainty for regional Australians that their essential broadband services will be available into the future.”

However, Internet Australia executive director Laurie Patton said the NBN tax would just only add up to Aussies’ expenses. Mr Patton explained the NBN’s difficulty in amassing the budget needed is because of residents who don’t sign in with the network maker. Well, consumers already know that NBN is only surrounded by complaints and incompetent service since a majority of them already experience the slow speeds, disconnections, and incompetent services of the NBN.

“This is clearly another attempt to find a new line of revenue for the NBN,” he said.

“It would be better if they were to fix the underlying problems which would lead to more people signing up to the NBN and more revenue.

“Charging an extra $7 per customer is likely to be counter-productive in the short-term because it’s obvious a lot of people are holding off until the last moment before switching to the NBN.”