Applications are now open for the Priority Locations funding round of the Mobile Black Spot Program.
This round is designed to improve mobile coverage for Australians in priority locations already announced by the Government.
Providing mobile coverage can be very expensive and challenging given Australia's vast land mass and difficult terrain. The Government is investing another $60 million through this round to help carriers improve their services to these areas.
Since the Government's initial announcement, 18 of the 125 initially announced priority locations are having their mobile coverage issue addressed by either a base station funded under round two of the program, or through the carriers expanding or improving their networks. One additional priority location on Flinders Island, Tasmania will also receive improved mobile coverage through the Government's Building Better Regions Fund.
The Government is now seeking suitable applications from the mobile industry to improve mobile coverage for the remaining 106 locations, through a competitive tender process.
To date, more than 300 base stations have already been delivered under rounds one and two of the Mobile Black Spot Program. Telstra, Vodafone and Optus are scheduled to deliver 765 new base stations by the second half of 2018.
How does it work?
Applications for funding will be assessed on a location by location basis against criteria set out in the Program Guidelines.
We expect the outcome of the assessment process will be announced in early 2018. The solutions at the successful locations will be required to be completed by the end of 2018.