Almost half of Illawarra businesses looking for a broadband connection are left waiting for a month for internet access.
According to a NSW Business Chamber survey, 43 per cent have had to wait four weeks to get online, with a similar amount expressing dissatisfaction with their internet service.
“A reliable and affordable internet service is essential for most businesses across the region,” the chamber’s executive director Chris Lamont said.
“We also need to appreciate the importance of these services to clients who rely on business to provide essential services in areas such as health care, transport and security.”
The survey followed on from the chamber’s ‘Not Happy, Jan’ campaign calling on businesses to share their online woes.
Mr Lamont said more than 150 Illawarra businesses have responded to this campaign, with 60 per cent of them indicating the process of connecting to the NBN was “somewhat to very disruptive”.
Additionally, some businesses reported that issues with the NBN either resulted in a loss of business or extra expenses.
“Concerns include drop-outs, long delays in getting follow-up maintenance and confusion in respect to who is responsible for what,” Mr Lamont said.
The campaign for improved internet connectivity continues on Friday with a telecommunications forum, which will be attended by Illawarra federal MPs Sharon Bird and Stephen Jones.
“We welcome local business input,” Cunningham MP Ms Bird said.
“Labor is very concerned about the effects of the second-rate NBN foisted on regional areas by Malcolm Turnbull and it’s important we hear from Illawarra business directly.”
The Illawarra Business Chamber telecommunications forum is on Friday, September 15, between 10.30am and noon.
It will be held on level nine of the Wollongong City Council building in Burelli Street.