Coalition Government gives boost to telecommunications in Gemtree and White Gums, Alice Springs

Dept of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications

Residents of Gemtree in Anmatjere and White Gums in Alice Springs in the Northern Territory will soon be better connected following successful applications under Round 2 of the Regional Connectivity Program.

The Regional Connectivity Program (RCP) targets investment in telecommunications projects that respond to local priorities, and maximise economic and social benefits for regional, rural and remote communities and businesses across Australia.

Minister for Regional Communications, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie, said the projects form part of the Coalition Government’s continuing roll-out of the $257 million Program.

“Through Round 1, we funded over 130 projects following our $117 million investment and these new projects – the first to be announced under Round 2 – build on our investment,” Minister McKenzie said.

“The Gemtree project is funded under the Connecting Northern Australia component, which the Coalition Government set aside $72 million toward in the 2021-22 Federal Budget. 34 projects will be delivered under this component of Round 2.

“This is a welcome investment in the region. The new Telstra macro mobile site in Gemtree will provide new and improved mobile, voice and data connectivity for residents and commuters travelling along Plenty Highway, as well as visitors to Gemtree. The upgrade will also support local businesses and community facilities, enabling increased residential access to essential services such as telehealth and education.

“BizCom Pty Ltd has been awarded funding to deliver a fibre broadband network to the suburb of White Gums, delivering increased connectivity to keep residents connected to business, to loved ones and to the world.

“When combined, projects like these will help our regions reach their potential, through new job opportunities or better access to services,”

“In total, we expect the second Round of the RCP to catalyse $225 million in additional investment, delivering a huge boost to our regional, rural and remote communities across Australia,” Minister McKenzie said.

Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia, the Hon David Littleproud MP, said the Coalition Government’s investment would improve access to the digital economy for regional communities and businesses in the vital strategic growth area of Northern Australia, including for remote First Nations communities.

“This dedicated investment in Northern Australia will provide targeted uplifts to connectivity for businesses and extend the economic and social benefits of high-speed, reliable broadband and mobile services to Australians living and working in remote places,” Minister Littleproud said.

“As part of the CNA initiative, $27 million of dedicated funding was allocated to mobile connectivity projects following an exceptionally strong response, highlighting the importance – and our commitment – to delivering high quality telecommunications infrastructure and keeping communities connected.”

The Coalition Government has invested approximately $257 million in the Program, committing $117 million under Round 1 to deliver more than 130 place-based telecommunications projects and $140 million for Round 2, including dedicated funding of $72 million through the Connecting Northern Australia initiative (CNA initiative) for mobile coverage and digital connectivity projects in Northern Australia.

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