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Regulatory Regimes "Smoke And Mirrors Exercise"

Telecommunications And Electricity Announcements A "Smoke And Mirrors Exercise"

The announcements over the past two days of light-handed industry based regulatory regimes for electricity and communications seem to be more of a smoke and mirrors exercise, rather than representing a substantial industry-wide change, says Hon Peter Dunne, leader United New Zealand.

"While both announcements contain welcome measures and move the respective industries in the right direction, there is a need for a more co-ordinated approach across all our essential utilities.

"For example, we should be looking at a central regulatory body, responsible for all essential utilities rather than the ad-hoc approach of setting up new bodies for each utility or industry sector," says Mr Dunne.

He says in many respects the announcements of light-handed industry self regulation in the electricity and communications sectors mirror each other, certainly in their objectives.

"While there will be specific issues unique to each industry sector there appears to be broad agreement on such issues as consumer protection, industry based regulation, watchdog roles and promotion of innovation with a carrot and stick approach to compliance.

"Therefore a cross-sector industry approach with a central watchdog and regulatory body would simplify the process of reform and be more resourceful," says Mr Dunne.

END


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