In March 2010 the Minister for Communications and IT, Steven Joyce, announced the Government’s final Rural Broadband
Initiative (RBI) proposal and after asking for expressions of interest, a request for proposals for the RBI was issued in August 2010.
Telecom and Vodafone submitted a joint bid for the RBI in November 2010, which was shortlisted alongside 2 other bids in
December 2010. In February 2011 the government announced it would enter into commercial negotiations with Telecom and
Vodafone and a final agreement to deliver the RBI was accepted by the Government on 20 April 2011.
For more details about the Government’s RBI objectives and the
tender process please visit the Ministry of Economic
- 97.8% of New Zealand households will receive a minimum peak speed of 5Mbps and many will get more.
- 98.7% of all New Zealand households will get download speeds of 1Mbps or faster. This is better than the 97% RBI target. The
remaining 1.3% will be able to purchase a retail satellite service.
- There will be $150 - $200 million of additional investment from Telecom and Vodafone on top of the Crown investment.
- Pricing for infrastructure construction is ‘open book’ - this means that even more rural infrastructure will be built if the actual
construction costs are less than currently planned.
- Consumers can seek a service from any provider who chooses to operate in their area and most consumers will have a choice in
services that use either fixed or wireless technologies.
- Vodafone and Telecom will provide Wholesale bitstream services to any Access Seeker on a non-discriminatory basis
which means that other ISPs and retail service providers can build competitive retail offerings from a variety of services.
- All of the build technology is available now and can be deployed to provide broadband services. This technology is deployed
around the world and has a recognised upgrade path so is futureproofed.
- No changes to telecommunications regulatory framework required.
- No relaxation of spectrum acquisition rules required and there is no reliance on the digital spectrum dividend auction (700 MHz).