TELECOMMUNICATIONS VITAL TO AUSTRALIA’S ECONOMY, RESEARCH FINDS

Sydney, 7 November 2019: Australia’s telecommunications industry directly contributes more than $51 billion annually to the Australian economy and supports more than 260,000 jobs across the nation, new research has revealed.

“In addition to being an important industry vertical, telecommunications is a key ‘horizontal enabler’, facilitating innovation and enterprise in every other industry sector,” the research found.

Economic analysis of these productivity benefits shows that the Australian economy is 6.5%, or $126 billion, larger in 2019 than it would have been without the positive impact of telecommunications.

This equates to an additional $5,000 per Australian, per year.

These are among the findings of the Connected Nation report, launched today by the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon. Paul Fletcher MP. The research was undertaken by Deloitte Access Economics and is available here.

The report shows the industry employed 87,300 full time equivalent (FTE) roles directly, across Australia, in 2017-18.

The telco sector also supported 180,000 roles elsewhere in the economy. John Stanton, CEO of Communications Alliance, which commissioned the research, said the findings underlined the central role that telecommunications plays in the lives of virtually all Australians and in the health and robustness of the national economy.

“The research also highlights the ways in which telecommunications infrastructure generates economic efficiency, by enhancing the ability of individuals and businesses to communicate and collaborate – creating additional opportunities for the growth that Australia needs so badly,” Mr Stanton said.

Minister Fletcher welcomed the findings and said the report demonstrates the importance of the telecommunications sector in supporting a strong and stable economy.

“It is clear that the telecommunications sector is a vital enabler of Australia’s economic activity, directly contributing more than $51 billion to GDP in 2017-18. Telecommunications is a key input to every industry – helping businesses operate more efficiently, connecting them to new national and international markets, and aiding communication with customers and suppliers.”

“I look forward to continued innovation from the sector as it paves the way for the adoption of new technologies such as 5G networks and the Internet of Things.”

The report also found that telecommunications has the second highest investment rate compared to 93 other industries in the economy. Robust competition in the sector has resulted in the price of services falling significantly in real terms over the past decade, while connectivity, data, speed, and the diversity of products and services have all improved – often dramatically.

John O’Mahony, Partner at Deloitte Access Economics, outlined the key research findings at today’s launch and commented: “This report demonstrates that telecommunications is central to delivering two of the Commonwealth Government’s economic objectives – lifting investment and improving productivity – which are the basis of higher living standards in the long term.”

ABOUT COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE
Communications Alliance is the primary telecommunications industry body in Australia. Its membership is drawn from a wide cross-section of the  communications industry, including carriers, carriage and internet  service providers, content providers, search engines, equipment vendors, IT companies, consultants and business groups.

The most influential association in Australian communications, co-operatively initiating programs that promote sustainable industry development, innovation and growth, while generating positive outcomes for customers and society.  To create a co-operative stakeholder environment that allows the industry to take the lead on initiatives which grow the Australian communications industry, enhance the connectivity of all Australians and foster the highest standards of business behaviour.  For more details about Communications Alliance, see www.commsalliance.com.au.

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Neeley Williams nwilliams@sefiani.com.au
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