Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Telecommunications Bill Reported Back

18 September Media Statement

Telecommunications Bill Reported Back From Select Committee


“The Government welcomes the report back of the Telecommunications Bill from its consideration by the Commerce Committee,” the Minister of Communications, Hon. Paul Swain, said today.

“I would like to thank the Committee for its work on this Bill, which contains a number of quite technical provisions that the Committee has considered.”

“The Bill has been subject to rigorous scrutiny by the Committee. I think that the amendments it has recommended will lead to a more robust regulatory regime for telecommunications.”

The Government introduced the Telecommunications Bill in May this year. The Bill contains the Government’s response to the Ministerial Inquiry into Telecommunications, which reported back to the Government in September 2000.

The Bill creates a new regulatory framework for the telecommunications industry (including a new Telecommunications Commissioner within the Commerce Commission), and carries over most of the provisions of the Telecommunications Act 1987.

“I understand the Committee considered a large number of very helpful submissions on the Bill, and has accordingly recommended a number of amendments to make the regime more robust.”

Key changes recommended include:

- shortened timeframes for the Commerce Commission to make certain determinations or decisions;

- immediate designation of fixed to mobile pre-selection from Telecom’s network as a multinetwork service;

- a new purpose clause for the provisions in Part 3 that relate to the declaration of Telecommunications Service Obligation (TSO) instruments. TSOs will reflect government social policy objectives to ensure that certain telecommunications services are available in areas where they may not otherwise be provided on a commercial basis, or at affordable prices;

- giving the Commerce Commission the power to choose weighted or unweighted revenues as the basis for calculating the amount payable by a liable person in relation to a TSO instrument;

- allowing the Commissioner to impute a retail price for individual services sold together in a bundle of retail services, under the designation of retail services offered by means of Telecom’s fixed telecommunications network (although for procedural reasons this recommendation was not included in the Bill as reported back. It will be addressed by Supplementary Order Paper).

“There are a number of other amendments that Government members on the Committee would like to see made to the Bill to strengthen it, but that were not agreed by the Committee because of the split in membership. These include:

- a revised purpose clause for Part 2 to ensure consistency with the Commerce Act;

- strengthening of the wholesaling regime by including price-capped services (residential local access) in the designation of wholesaling of Telecom’s fixed network services, as recommended by the Inquiry;

- mandatory reviews of the need to designate local loop unbundling and access to unbundled elements of (and interconnection with) Telecom’s fixed public data networks. These reviews are to be carried out by the Telecommunications Commissioner within 24 months of the commencement of the Bill;

- specifying two mobile services, national roaming and cellsite co-location, as recommended by the Inquiry. Specification will send strong signals to industry that access to these services must be provided if requested;

- prescribing a fast-track process for a specified service to become a designated service, if necessary (designation allows pricing principles to be resolved); and

- clarifying the matters that may be considered by road owners in imposing reasonable conditions on the work of telecommunications network operators on roads.

“The Government intends to introduce Supplementary Order Papers to amend the Bill in relation to all these matters.”

“I am aiming to progress the Bill through its final stages in good time, so that the new regime can commence as early as possible.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news