​NZ opinions submitted as Chorus backs Govt telco review

Chorus supports government’s proposal to move to a utility-style regulatory framework for broadband infrastructure.

Chorus supports the government’s proposal to move to a utility-style regulatory framework for broadband infrastructure.

In a direct response to a Discussion Document issued by Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, the company has provided its views as part of the submission process on the review of the Telecommunications Act that is currently underway.

“The discussions through the Telecommunications Forum (TCF) indicate broad agreement amongst the industry on some of the key areas for discussion,” says Vanessa Oakley, General Counsel, Chorus.

“For example, the TCF supports a utility-style model for fibre and more scope for commercial solutions where possible.

“Building on that alignment we have also provided some suggestions for the government to consider ways to transition to utility-style regulation, taking into account the policy objectives outlined in the discussion document, including the aspirations for further investment and the need for competition and innovation at the retail level.”

According to Oakley, one mechanism that could work is for Undertakings - a legally binding commitment made to another entity, such as the Crown - to be made.

“This was the way the operational separation of Telecom was put in place, and Undertakings have also been used in the telecommunications sector in Australia,” Oakley adds.

“The use of Undertakings could complement the more detailed modelling work that may need to occur to provide long term sustainability for the whole industry, but also allow all of us to get on with delivering the government’s policy objectives quickly while the detailed work is completed.”

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