NBN Co offers price relief during COVID-19 crisis

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 20 March, 2020

NBN Co offers price relief during COVID-19 crisis

NBN Co has announced a new initiative to help operators keep up with the traffic demands involved with more Australians working from home during the COVID-19 crisis.

The company will offer retailers access to pricing relief for up to 40% more connectivity virtual circuit (CVC) capacity as required to meet growing demand at no additional cost.

CVC is the capacity retail service providers purchase per user in addition to the access virtual circuit (AVC) pricing for each physical connection.

NBN Co plans to set the CVC usage charges applied in February as a baseline, and waive any additional charges for coverage that would otherwise be incurred by RSPs over the next three months.

Stephen Rue, NBN Co’s CEO, said the announcement follows weeks of detailed planning and assessment by NBN Co’s engineers on the network’s capabilities to meet the growing requirements of Australian consumers.

“We have been in regular talks with retailers over the past couple of weeks to understand the wholesale network support they require to meet the needs of more Australians working from home and as individuals, couples and families across the nation are spending more time at home, and naturally wanting to stay productive and connected to family and friends,” he said.

“We’re proud to play our part to keep Australians connected and productive through this crisis. Data carriage on the nbn has already increased by around 5–6% over the last few days as customers have increasingly started to work from home. The nbn is performing well, and we have not seen or experienced any significant traffic congestion on the network.”

Rue said the pricing relief of up to 40% higher capacity is in line with the traffic growth seen in countries like Italy, which have mandated working from home arrangements during the crisis.

“NBN Co will play the critical role it was set up to fulfil, ensuring Australia’s wholesale digital infrastructure is robust, resilient and reliable. We are confident that this immediate response will make a significant difference,” he said.

“We are also mindful that these are unprecedented times and remain vigilant to any unexpected market and usage changes. We will continue to work closely with retailers to support Australians during this time.”

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Karen Roach

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