The federal government will loan nbn the $19.5 billion it needs to complete the NBN rollout.
The government’s equity contribution of $29.5 billion to nbn is expected to be used in the 2016/17 financial year.
nbn’s 2017 Corporate Plan assumed it will source private debt funding for the remaining $19.5 billion needed to complete the rollout.
However, to help ensure that nbn can fully focus on the remaining rollout as it significantly ramps up, the government decided to provide the funding required to complete the rollout through a government loan to nbn on commercial terms.
In anticipation of a future privatisation of nbn as provided for in the NBN Companies Act 2011, it is expected that this loan will be re-financed by nbn on external markets in 2020-21.
Federal Minister For Communications, Mitch Fifield, said a government loan on commercial terms represented the most cost-effective way to raise the debt and secure funding to complete the rollout.
Mr Fifield said nbn had recently obtained strong indicative credit ratings from credit agencies, which showed that nbn’s business case is strong.
The Commonwealth’s commercial loan terms will be set in line with the credit ratings achieved by nbn.