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Telecommunications - Summary Of Key Decisions

SUMMARY OF KEY GOVERNMENT DECISIONS
PROMOTING ECONOMIC OBJECTIVES
Regulatory institutions  New Telecommunications Commissioner located in the Commerce Commission
 funded by industry; specialist staff; full time if necessary
 Key functions of Commissioner to:
 resolve disputes over regulated services
 report to Minister on desirability of regulating additional services
 monitor and enforce Kiwi Share obligations
 Industry Forum not mandatory but expected to be established
 Commissioner can approve codes of practice
Forms of regulation

 Designation – obligation to provide the service; sets out pricing principles to be applied in resolving disputes. Services to be designated initially are:
 Interconnection with Telecom’s fixed telephone network
 cost-based (TSLRIC) or bill and keep
 Wholesaling Telecom’s fixed network services
 retail price minus net costs saved
 Number portability, including 0800 number portability
 Deferred designation (with deadline) - sets a deadline for designation to encourage industry to resolve issues
 Fixed-to-mobile carrier pre-selection from Telecom’s network
 Specification - an obligation to provide the service, but no pricing principles prescribed
 no services to be specified immediately
Process for regulating new services  Minister or Telecommunications Commissioner initiates
 Commissioner studies and reports to Minister
 Minister considers and, if agrees, designates by Order-in-Council (Regulations)
Process for resolving disputes  Initial price determination
 Full pricing review if requested; 3 Commissioners decide
 Appeal on full pricing review only (points of law and judicial review); decision binding meantime

PROMOTING SOCIAL OBJECTIVES

Kiwi Share
 Upgraded Kiwi Share requirements
 extends geographic coverage to current levels
 clarifies that free local calls include dial-up data (e.g. Internet) calls
 extends 9.6kbps to 99% and 14.4kbps to 95% of residential lines over two years. (Telecom to bear capital cost of this upgrade – industry to contribute to any ongoing KSO losses)
 Improved funding mechanism – industry continue to contribute, but more transparent and competitively neutral
 Telecom to undertake costing of Kiwi Share
 final cost determination made by Commissioner
 Telecom seeks Commissioner’s approval to oncharge proportion of net operating costs to competitors
 Commissioner determines what proportions firms should pay
 Improved monitoring and enforcement
 Commissioner to monitor performance against agreed standards
 Commissioner withholds Telecom’s right to oncharge competitors in the event of non-performance.
Information Society Initiative  Partnership between Government, industry and communities, including to promote access to bandwidth across New Zealand
 Details to be decided early next year
Electric fence interference  Government to work with key stakeholders to facilitate solutions to electric fence interference with Internet access in rural areas
Universal service obligations for higher speed data  Monitor the uptake of higher speed data services and new technologies
 Consider in 18 months the case for:
 a universal service obligation for higher speed data
 competitive tendering of Kiwi Share/USO

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