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Commission revises TSO schedule


Media Release

Issued 13 May 2002/049


Commission revises TSO schedule

The Commerce Commission has revised its Telecommunications Service Obligations (TSO) schedule in response to requests from interested parties for additional time to prepare for the TSO conference.

The deadline to receive submissions on the Commission’s TSO Implementation Issues Paper is now 10 June 2002. The subsequent four day TSO conference has been rescheduled to 8, 10-12 July 2002. The Commission aims to issue, by March next year, its determination of the TSO cost and industry contributions.

Commission’s Manager of Network Access, Osmond Borthwick, said the Commission discussed timing with industry participants last Thursday.

“The consultative process, which includes submissions and the conference, enables the Commission to gain valuable industry feedback for what is a complex piece of work under the Telecommunications Act,” said Mr Borthwick.

Background

The Telecommunications Act (2001) came into force on 20 December 2001. The main purpose of the Act is to regulate the supply of telecommunications services.

Its key features are:
- establishing a Telecommunications Commissioner as a member of the Commerce Commission;
- “designating” and “specifying” a range of key telecommunications services;
- providing the right for any party involved in negotiations over a designated or specified service to apply to the Commission to make a determination on all or some of the terms on which the service must be supplied;
- specifying what the Commission’s determinations should cover, and how they should be carried out;
- providing a mechanism for establishing a new universal service obligation (called the telecommunications service obligations or TSO); and
- specifying the way in which the TSO should be costed, and how the cost burden should be shared among different telecommunications carriers.
The Commission is in the process of deciding how it intends to approach the more detailed aspects of the TSO task. The Commission released two discussion papers, TSO Discussion Paper and Practice Note – Cornerstone Issues Paper and TSO Discussion Paper and Practice Note – Implementation Issues Paper. The papers provide an opportunity for industry representatives and key stakeholders to comment on the Commission’s tentative conclusions in this area.

All Commission discussion papers can be downloaded from the website, www.comcom.govt.nz.

ENDS

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