AUSVEG has welcomed plans by the Federal Coalition to improve regional mobile phone services throughout remote, regional and outer-metropolitan Australia.

The Coalition has pledged to invest $100 million towards the expansion of current mobile networks and the elimination of mobile reception spots if elected at the upcoming election on Saturday 7 September.
“Regional mobile coverage is an extremely important issue for vegetable growers and primary producers across the country, and if implemented, the programme would undoubtedly have significant, tangible effects on individual growers’ productivity,” said AUSVEG Public Affairs Manager, William Churchill.
AUSVEG is the leading voice in horticulture representing Australia’s 9,000 vegetable and potato growers.
The Coalition plans to target major transport routes, small communities and locations prone to natural disasters by contributing towards the expansion of mobile phone services to an estimated 200 – 250 locations across the nation.
“Farmers often go for long stretches without mobile phone coverage due to geographic constraints or a lack of signal towers in the area. In a modern world where communications are paramount, this sort of interruption to business is a major impediment.”
“These sorts of solutions will be beneficial to horticultural producers around the country and allow them to be more efficient. Reception black spots are extremely detrimental to businesses that are dependent on long distance communications and logistics, and the Coalition’s plan will help to reconnect growers with their trading partners and the metropolitan community,” said Mr Churchill.
The Coalition has also pledged improve coverage by utilising the National Broadband Network (NBN) infrastructure to co-locate mobile phone cell towers with NBN towers.
The plans to improve mobile coverage in regional Australia were unveiled yesterday by  Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Tony Abbott MP, the Shadow Minister for Communications and Broadband, the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull MP and the Shadow Minister for Regional Communications, Mr Luke Hartsuyker MP.
“Metropolitan users often complain about the coverage they receive in the CBD and suburbs, but our regional communities really do have it tough when it comes to telecommunications.”
“The Australian vegetable industry welcomes any help that will make conducting business that bit easier for its growers,” said Mr Churchill.
MEDIA CONTACT: William Churchill, Public Affairs Manager, AUSVEG.
Phone: (03) 9822 0388, Mobile: 0411 166 748, Email: