The communities of Brewarrina and Wilcannia will benefit from a boost to mobile coverage thanks to the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government’s landmark $5.5 million agreement with OneWiFi and Pivotel, announced today.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the agreement brings mobile tower infrastructure sharing into reality; following more than 18 months of work by the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government and the telecommunications sector.
“The ‘one tower, one provider’ model funded by most government programs has helped boost coverage in the bush but done little to really move the needle in terms of driving better deals for consumers,” Mr Toole said.
“NSW is leading the way nationally to push for a different approach where government-funded infrastructure is available for use by all carriers.
“For locals in these communities that will mean better coverage, better competition and better choice – and for visitors, better certainty of getting signal no matter who their provider.”
“This agreement will provide coverage to 1,350 square kilometres, benefitting more than 800 homes and businesses in Brewarrina and Wilcannia, with two mobile towers offering 4G and 5G voice and data services.”
“A key feature of the agreement is it enables all carriers to access the active sharing solution, potentially bringing more mobile competition into these areas.”
OneWiFi and Pivotel have welcomed the grant funding support.
“We are excited to partner with the NSW Government to move away from legacy models and take real steps toward a future that serves the interests of all customers and industry participants equally,” OneWiFi Managing Director Mevan Jayatilleke said.
“Under this type of model, we’re bridging the digital divide to provide regional customers more choice than ever.”
“We’ve worked hard to develop alternative commercial and technical sharing models through the active sharing program and are proud to be the first mobile network operator in this innovative investment by the NSW Government,” Pivotel Chief Executive Peter Bolger said.
The OneWiFi and Pivotel agreement is the first signed as part of the $30 million Active Sharing Partnership grant opportunity, released in 2022. Further agreements are expected in the coming months once contract negotiations are finalised.
This initiative is part of the NSW Liberal and National Government’s more than $400 million Regional Digital Connectivity program funded through the Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund. For more information, visit: www.nsw.gov.au/connectregionalnsw.