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ISPs Join Together To Push For Improved Broadband

ISPs Join Together To Push For Improved Broadband

More than 20 of New Zealand's Internet service providers (ISPs) have banded together to address the growing concern that New Zealand is lagging behind the developed world in broadband uptake, to the detriment of economic growth, especially given New Zealand's geographic isolation.

David Diprose, spokesperson for the Internet Service Providers Association of New Zealand (ISPANZ) says by forming a united collective they hope to add weight to the growing efforts to improve New Zealand's poor OECD rating for broadband uptake.

"We support the objectives of the minister's Digital Strategy and believe these can only be achieved through increased competition. Competition will bring innovation leading to greater choice and better value for consumers."

ISPANZ says New Zealand's poor broadband penetration in comparison to the rest of the developed world is largely due to current broadband offerings being not only expensive but extremely limited in terms of speed and data caps.

"We intend to lobby the Government and the Commerce Commission to make the necessary legislative changes to improve the current UBS wholesale offering from Telecom, including lower pricing, faster download and upload speeds, and retail parity for provisioning and service levels," says Diprose.

In the longer term ISPANZ see local loop unbundling as the best way to improve broadband penetration because it allows ISPs to introduce truly cost-effective and innovative broadband products to the market, as is already the case in the rest of the world.

"New Zealand's broadband market is suffering from a lack of true competition because current UBS resellers are faced with low margins and a very limited ability to differentiate between broadband products.

"The government needs to take decisive action to ensure New Zealand catches up to worldwide broadband standards - which means providing robust regulation to allow ISPs to offer vastly improved and more affordable broadband products to consumers," he says.

ENDS


ABOUT ISPANZ

ISPANZ is a group of highly experienced and savvy Internet technologists and entrepreneurs who are committed to encouraging innovation and the development of information and communication technology in New Zealand. Amongst them are the quick and nimble players who brought the Internet to New Zealand, some six years ahead of Telecom as well as those who continue to be the first in bringing many new services to market. They are the innovators who will drive growth and productivity gains in New Zealand. As the competitive force against Telecom they believe that enhanced competition will also encourage Telecom to invest in its own network. ISPANZ intend to educate their users, the public and various facets of government of the issues facing New Zealand ISPs, without holding back public voice in fear of punitive commercial action or in hope that there may be some future measure of commercial relief offered by Telecom.

The group is still in the process of officially formation. There are currently 22 members, with more interested parties.

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