Australians want faster NBN even if it costs more to build

Alex Kidman 21 June 2016

NBN-fibre-closeup-hands

Survey says that Australians will vote in favour of faster NBN even at at a higher asking price.

There’s no doubting that the National Broadband Network (NBN) has been a very politically contentious issue ever since its inception, with issues of rollout, corporate governance and above all cost being at the forefront of the political bickering. With the Federal election imminent, however, the NBN has been one of many issues being debated ahead of 2 July.

The ABC’s Vote Compass team has broken out the responses to its general election survey tool as they relate to the NBN. While politicians of every stripe bicker back and forth, the results are pretty conclusive, with the vast majority of Australians surveyed in favour of a faster NBN even if implementing it would cost more.

Across the nation, support for a faster NBN despite cost sits at 69% according to the Vote Compass results. Only 16% of respondents strongly disagreed with this position.

Support for faster NBN despite cost was strongest in metropolitan areas, but only by a relatively small margin compared to regional and rural voters. Here’s how the Vote Compass data breaks down by location:

NBN Support By LocationPercentage
Inner Metro70%
Outer Metro68%
Regional68%
Rural65%

As the ABC notes, the survey results match up to Australian experiences with broadband accessibility and speeds, with some 48% of regional Australians reporting their Internet access as "very poor" according to University of Canberra research.

The NBN remains a political issue, but the breakdown of voter intention based on political allegiances doesn’t entirely match with where you might think it will. Here’s how voters view the issue of delivering the NBN at a higher cost breaks down by party:

NBN Support: PoliticalAgreeDisagree
ALP85%6%
Green82%6%
Liberal/National52%27%
Other63%18%

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