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Message started by bigglesk on Dec 1st, 2009, 3:14pm

Title: Broadband tax Report for UK
Post by bigglesk on Dec 1st, 2009, 3:14pm

Broadband tax to be levied per line not per household, says report

The government's proposed 6 annual broadband levy would be charged per phone line rather than per household according to leaked government documents seen by The Times.

The tax will also include VAT, meaning that a household with separate phone lines for telephone, fax and broadband would pay 21.15 a year, rather than the 6that had been mooted initially.

"The tax is being introduced to help pay for the introduction of super-fast broadband delivery in rural areas of Britain. It is part of the Finance Bill that will be introduced early next year.

The Times reports that up to 1.7 million households could be affected by the plan to charge per line, and that the tax will be levied not just on copper lines, as initially planned, but on high-speed fibre-optic connections. The charge is to be levied through phone bills.

The Conservative Party has said that if it is voted in, plans for the broadband tax will be scrapped."

Have you seen any reports on this?

Title: Re: Broadband tax Report for UK
Post by sleepy on Dec 1st, 2009, 6:29pm

Found quite a lot about this using google Keith, this article from the Guardian is quite good.

"Landline owners will pay 6 a year to fund the rollout of superfast broadband across the country, communications minister Lord Carter said today as he launched the government's Digital Britain report.

In his long-awaited blueprint for the future of the UK's communications infrastructure, Carter also said the surplus from the BBC's digital switchover help scheme would help to fund the 200m cost of providing universal access to broadband.

The government wants everyone to be able to receive broadband of at least 2Mbps by 2012 as it puts more public services online.

It is also anxious that remote or underserved parts of the country are not left behind when the "next generation" of superfast broadband is built.

"True superfast broadband will be concentrated in the first two-thirds of the market in the next decade, leaving the 'final third' served only with current generation broadband," today's report said. "This would be undesirable."

The report proposed a charge of 50p a month on the UK's copper lines to help upgrade the country's fixed-line network, a project on which BT and Virgin Media have already embarked.

This levy will raise between 150m and 175m a year to extend next-generation broadband to the "final third" of the country that will not be reached by the market.

It will act as "seedcorn funding" to attract commercial operators to roll out networks further rather than attempts to cover the total costs of the project.

Carter acknowledged that the levy would hit consumers in the pocket at a time when many households were feeling the pinch.

"How will the public react? We will find out," he said. "Our view as a government is that it's a good exercise of judgment."

He said the decision should be seen in the context of a real-terms decline in telecoms prices over recent years.

The move would require legislation, Carter said. "We are consulting on it, but it's a firm proposal," he added.

The report gave more details about how the government aims to achieve its goal of providing universal access to a minimum 2Mb broadband connection, the so-called Universal Service Commitment.

Part of it will come from money left over from the BBC's fund to help people switch to digital television by 2012, with contributions from private partners and public sector bodies also among the other sources of funding.

An estimated 2.75m homes, around 11% of the UK's households, are unable to receive a connection of at least this speed at the moment.

The report said that 1.5m households with little or no broadband connection might be able to get access to next-generation broadband as a result of the commitment.

Carter said the 2Mb speed was like a "technological minimum wage". "We are not specifying a ceiling, we are specifying a floor," he added.

The commitment is expected to be achieved through a combination of upgrades to BT's fixed-line network, mobile broadband and satellite broadband".

Title: Re: Broadband tax Report for UK
Post by bigglesk on Dec 4th, 2009, 3:23pm

Well!!! I don't like the look of it. Thanks for the reply.


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