Federal government announces further $25 million to fix mobile phone blackspots in remote areas

REMOTE communities with poor mobile phone coverage have been given a glimmer of hope with a further $25 million on offer from the federal government.

Senator Bridget McKenzie

Senator Bridget McKenzie

Regional communications minister and National Party deputy leader Bridget McKenzie announced the latest funding was on offer at the weekend and followed $220 million already allocated in previous rounds.

“We are doing this by investing in areas overlooked by mobile network operators due to commercial reasons,” Senator McKenzie said.

“The new round will call for applications from mobile carriers within the coming months, taking input from state, territory and local governments, as well as businesses, community organisations and emergency services.”

It follows the government not allocating any more funding for mobile phone blackspots in its May budget.

Farrer MP Sussan Ley encouraged residents, businesses and community organisations to begin talks with with the state government and their local council to bolster their chances of achieving funding in the latest allocation.

“This is a very much a shared issue across all levels of government, with NSW recently announcing $50 million from its Connecting Country Communities Fund to invest in communications infrastructure,” Ms Ley said.

“It is certainly my hope we can combine some of that funding to cover some of the numerous coverage gaps remaining in Farrer.”

The application period is due to commence later this year.