By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY, NSW: Communications Minister Senator Stephen Conroy has challenged Gerry Harvey to put his money – or at least claims of saving money – where his mouth is, this morning challenging the Harvey Norman chairman to tender a bid for the $308 million set top box giveaway announced as part of the federal budget this week.

Speaking on 2GB, Sydney’s highest rating radio station, Conroy said that if Harvey could indeed provide and install a set top box for less than $350, his should be one of the companies providing the service.

'If Gerry Harvey can meet the tender, the service standards, the occupational health and the safety standards, then we would welcome Harvey Norman putting in a tender,'' Conroy said.

'There's a tender for New South Wales regional parts, and regional New South Wales open right now today. If he can do it for less than $350, he'll get the gig.''

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This response came after Harvey Norman spokesperson Haydon Myers told The Australian that Harvey Norman could undercut the scheme by more than $150.

"We can do a top-range, LCD digital television for $199, which you don't even need a set-top box for," Myers said. "All you have to do is plug a lead from the TV into the wall and one to the antenna."