Smartcard cost projections 'fictional': Opposition

Shadow Minister for Human Services Kelvin Thomson has labelled the A$1.1 billion (US$854,368,656) costing for the federal government's smartcard rollout as "fictional."

Responding to the announcement in the 2006/07 federal budget of the government's funding for an access card for health and welfare services, Thomson expressed concern that cost blowouts are likely.

"Given the current government's previous track record with IT implementations such as the Customs debacle, such a figure is fictional," he said.

Thomson called on Human Services Minister Joe Hockey to release the full KPMG International cost report to increase public confidence in the benefits of a smartcard rollout.

To date, Hockey has released only an edited version of the report.

As a result, Thomson believes the government is hiding the real cost projections from the public.