The government of Australia has unveiled plans for a AU$43bn broadband network. Prime minister Kevin Rudd said that the government will back a new company which will work in co-operation with private firms to construct the network.
Some 90 per cent of Australia's homes and businesses will be connected to the internet via the network, which will be one of the largest infrastructure projects in the country's history.
The government estimates that the network will take more than eight years to build and require roughly 25,000 full-time workers during that period.
The finished network is predicted to offer speeds of up to 100Mbit/s to connected users. In areas where the broadband network is unavailable, the government plans to offer wireless and satellite connections.
Officials hope that the project will benefit consumers beyond simply expanding availability and performance by lowering the cost of internet services.
"The new investment is also the biggest reform in telecommunications in two decades because it delivers separation between the infrastructure provider and retail service providers," the government said in a statement.
"This means better and fairer infrastructure access for service providers, greater retail competition, and better services for families and businesses."
Overhauling broadband networks has become a top priority as governments have looked to infrastructure and redevelopment projects amid the economic crisis.
Earlier this year the Obama administration pushed forward a plan to overhaul the US broadband system.
Like the US, Australia contains large stretches of sparsely populated land in its interior which makes the deployment of broadband networks challenging for private telcos.
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