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Telecom letter not the end of the story

Media Release - December 1, 2006 - InternetNZ responded today to the 14 November 2006 letter Telecom sent to the Finance and Expenditure Committee on the Telecommunications Amendment Bill, as reported in this morning’s Dominion Post.

“The Committee’s draft bill, released this
Tuesday, shows that it has not responded to Telecom’s bluster. The operational
separation plan outlined in that letter is not one the industry or the
Government can accept,” said InternetNZ spokesperson Jordan Carter.
The letter was sent subsequent to the
meeting between Telecom and the Select Committee on 11 October, and pitched
another inadequate operational separation plan.
“If Parliament passes the legislation as
drafted, it is up to the Minister of Communications to define what will be
included in the operational separation plan and consequent undertakings.
“A number of issues will need to be
resolved. These include the list of products that are included in the
operational separation plan, where the corporate organisational lines need to
be drawn around the network assets and services subject to Equality of Access
obligations, and many other important issues.
“Telecom are seeking to minimise the impact
of operational separation by excluding legacy products from the new regime, and
leaving backhaul, all fibre and NGN technology out of the proposed network
“The industry and groups like InternetNZ
will be strongly advocating an operational separation plan which deals with the
core problem - Telecom’s ability and incentive to use its local access network
to its competitive advantage. This plan doesn’t cut it.
“Telecom’s proposal is just a start, and
continues their approach of claiming similarities with British Telecom’s
Openreach model that do not stand up to intensive scrutiny.
“InternetNZ has been analyzing the draft
Bill and will be making its views known to Government shortly. We will also
look forward to commenting on the draft operational separation plan when it is
released next year,” concluded Jordan Carter.

Jordan CarterResearch & Policy Officer021 442 649,

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