Australian next-generation network making slow progress

Australia’s next-generation broadband network will not achieve its target of having 341,000 premises covered by fibre by June this year, according NBN Co.

In a statement, NBN Co, the company managing the roll-out, said that the network was experiencing a three-month delay in construction, meaning that only an estimated 190,000 to 220,000 premises will benefit from fibre by June.

The problem is reportedly a lack of on-the-ground construction workers and in response to the delay, NBN Co is assuming direct management of the roll-out in Australia’s Northern Territory, allowing Syntheo, the contractor, to focus on the Western Australia and South Australia regions.

NBN Co is also expected to train and employ specialist workers, called fibre splicers, to reclaim lost time as well as create a further 200 jobs in the Northern Territory as a result of its takeover.

The company told reporters that is not experiencing problems in any other areas, such as IT implementation and transit networking, and still intends to meet its original Corporate Plan, in terms of cost and delivery, by 2021.

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