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ACT Attacks Kiwi Share Impact On Rural Services

The Government's poor handling of the Telecom `Kiwi Share' is the biggest obstacle to farmers getting much-need improvements to their internet services, ACT Rural Affairs Spokesman Owen Jennings says.

"Telecom is forced to price essential services in a way that makes investing in improvements totally unattractive. The Kiwi Share was designed for voice not data services. It is overdue for overhaul or removal. It has acted as a strong deterrent to innovation and change.

"The Government's new Telecom Act does not deal with the issue sensibly.

"ACT believes what is needed is negotiation of either a practical replacement of the Kiwi Share - or its complete removal - so that a pricing regime which promotes progressive investment in new technology can be established.

"Instead, this Government has handed the future of paying for the Kiwi Share to the rest of the telecommunications industry, under a complicated and fraught formula that will inevitably cause disputes and angst.

"ACT is urging all farmers to push for an early review of the Kiwi Share in the light of available technology advances - but the ongoing shocking quality of data services to rural NZ," Owen Jennings said.


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