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Unbundling Must Benefit All New Zealanders

11 May 2006

Unbundling Must Benefit All New Zealanders

New Zealand First communications spokesperson Brian Donnelly is urging the Government to ensure that rural New Zealand will receive equitable benefits and broadband services to users in urban areas as part of the telecommunications unbundling process.

"Though we must recognise that the increased availability of better services will come at different speeds in different areas, all New Zealanders must benefit as a result of the new regulatory framework," Mr Donnelly said.

"We must make sure that telecommunications companies don't focus on high density areas to the detriment of rural areas.

"Without adequate competition, companies can turn their back on the provision of new services to rural and provincial areas. By creating a more competitive market and encouraging investment in alternative infrastructure such as fibre, wireless and satellite networks by other companies in competition with Telecom, we can ensure that country schools receive reasonable broadband services at reasonable prices, and that farmers can expect to use the internet at a reasonable price and speed.

"If the Government’s goal is for New Zealand to be a world leader at using information and communications technology for economic, social and cultural gain, it must ensure that all New Zealanders can access the benefits that services like broadband can bring – wherever they live," concluded Mr Donnelly.

ENDS

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