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

 


Greens question elimination of competition in telco market

30 October 2012

Greens question elimination of competition in telco market

The Green Party is questioning the Commerce Commission’s decision to allow two of the biggest players in the telecommunications market to merge.

“We’ve seen it in the banking sector, the insurance sector, and now it’s happening in the telco sector. Vodafone’s takeover of TelstraClear will inevitably lead to higher prices for end-users, businesses, and government,” Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today.

The Commerce Commission has given clearance for Vodafone’s $840 million takeover of TelstraClear. Vodafone and TelstraClear are the second and third largest players in the New Zealand telecommunications market behind Telecom. The takeover includes a non-compete clause that will keep Australian telecommunications giant, Telstra, out of the New Zealand market place for an undisclosed duration.

“It’s not in the long-term interests of the New Zealand economy for our primary competition regulator to be eliminating competition in the telecommunications industry,” said Dr Norman.

“Large users of telecommunications services will be particularly affected. Where there was once three telcos competing for big contracts, now there will be only two.

“Make no mistake – Vodafone’s move is about eliminating competition. The takeover includes a specific non-compete clause that will keep Australian telecommunications giant, Telstra, out of the New Zealand market indefinitely.”

OECD data shows New Zealand’s telecommunications market is already dominated by two main players compared to places like the UK, Australia, Canada, and the USA.

“As a small market, New Zealand is particularly prone to monopolistic behaviour, eliminating competition and pushing up the prices we have to pay for basic services,” Dr Norman said.

“Telecom and Vodafone already have significant dominance in the telco market. This merger will enhance Vodafone’s ability to compete more broadly with Telecom but it will come at the cost of new entrants like 2 Degrees.

“The Commerce Commission have taken a very short-term view of competition, repeating the same mistake they made in the banking and insurance sectors leaving those markets vulnerable to anti-competitive behaviour from a few big overseas-owned companies.”

“It’s smarter to regulate to ensure we have competitive markets in the first place, rather than having to police two or three dominant players after the fact.”

OECD Communications Outlook report, 2011 (see page 59):
http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/science-and-technology/oecd-communications-outlook_19991460;jsessionid=64bv1vnb8p3j3.delta

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Arming Police: Frontline Police To Routinely Carry Tasers

"In making the decision, the Police executive has considered almost five years worth of 'use of force' data… It consistently shows that the Taser is one of the least injury-causing tactical options available when compared with other options, with a subject injury rate of just over one per cent for all deployments." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On D-Day For Dairy At The TPP

While New Zealand may feel flattered at being called “the Saudi Arabia of milk” it would be more accurate to regard us as the suicide bombers of free trade. More>>

ALSO:

Leaked Letter: Severe Restrictions on State Owned Enterprises

Even an SOE that exists to fulfil a public function neglected by the market or which is a natural monopoly would nevertheless be forced to act "on the basis of commercial considerations" and would be prohibited from discriminating in favour of local businesses in purchases and sales. Foreign companies would be given standing to sue SOEs in domestic courts for perceived departures from the strictures of the TPP... More>>

ALSO:

"Gutted" Safety Bill: Time To Listen To Workplace Victims’ Families

Labour has listened to the families of whose loved ones have been killed at work and calls on other political parties to back its proposals to make workplaces safer and prevent unnecessary deaths on the job. More>>

ALSO:

Regulators: Govt To ‘Crowd-Source’ Regulatory Advice

A wide-ranging set of reforms is to be implemented to shake up the way New Zealand government agencies develop, write and implement regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Board Appointments: Some Minister Appoint Less The 3 In 10 Women

“It’s 2015 not 1915: Ministers who appoint less than 3 in 10 women to their boards must do better, they have no excuse but to do better,” said Dr Blue. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The 1990s Retro Proposals For Our Health System

As we learned yesterday, the reviews propose that the democratically elected representation on DHBs should be reduced, such that community wishes will be able to be over-ridden by political appointees. In today’s revelations, the reviews also propose a return to the destructive competitive health model of the 1990s. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news