Queensland ICT Minister Robert Schwarten said today that the state was on the cusp of hiring a consultant to help it with its bid to have the National Broadband Network company's headquarters within the borders of the sunshine state.
The minister told ZDNet.com.au today that the state was still looking at two consultants but would soon be deciding on one to help it with its candidature for what he called "one of the iconic treasures of the National Broadband Network". He would not name the two competing consultants.
One of the duties of the consultant would be to pull together all the partners who have dealings with the state to give it a better bid. "We've got to make sure that our case is as good as it gets," Schwarten said. The government also has an internal team of about 12 working on NBN related issues.
Schwarten still wasn't certain what hosting the head office would mean to the state. It could just be an office tower, but it would be really good if the state could harbour the national operations centre for the network, Schwarten said.
NSW and Victoria have also put themselves forward as possible candidates.
Although winning the bid to be the centre of the NBN company would be a coup, Schwarten said it wasn't the main game.
The consultant would also be helping Queensland put its best foot forward for having at least a simultaneous roll-out with the other states, if not an earlier one, Schwarten said. "We'd be at a disadvantage if the network was not a priority in Queensland," he said.