Communications and Information Technology Minister Steven Joyce today released the “Invitation to Participate” in the partner selection process for the government’s $1.5 billion ultra-fast broadband investment initiative.
“I am pleased to kick off the process for seeking private sector partners who will co-invest with the government in ultra-fast broadband fibre infrastructure,” says Mr Joyce.
“This initiative will be a significant enabler of future economic growth, productivity improvements and overall global competitiveness.”
In September the government released its final proposal for the ultra-fast broadband initiative. The government’s investment is expected to be at least matched by private sector funding by way of a co-investment model in open access infrastructure.
The “Invitation to Participate” (ITP) provides the terms and conditions of the government’s investment, including technical specifications and the government’s preferred commercial model for co-investing with partners in a Local Fibre Company (LFC).
“The ITP is based upon an innovative commercial model that will see the government largely fund the deployment of fibre into communities, and the Crown’s LFC partner gradually taking a greater share in the LFC as it connects customers. This risk sharing model overcomes the major hurdle of uncertain demand,” says Mr Joyce.
“The commercial model is complex and warrants careful consideration. To assist interested parties in understanding the detail of the ITP, the Ministry of Economic Development will be available for briefings in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch over the next few weeks.”
The LFC will deploy, own and operate the open access network in a given coverage area.
The detailed ITP documentation is available on the Ministry of Economic Development’s website at www.med.govt.nz/ultra-fast-broadband.
Persons intending to participate in the partner selection process must notify the Ministry of Economic Development of their intention by Friday, 13 November 2009. Proposals must be lodged by 29 January 2010.