NZ and Australian govts to investigate trans-Tasman roaming

Further regulation of the mobile market may follow

An investigation into Trans-Tasman mobile roaming has been launched by the New Zealand and Australian governments.

The investigation was announced by ICT Minister Steven Joyce and his Australian counterpart Senator Stephen Conroy, at the Korea-Australia-New Zealand (KANZ) Broadband Summit in Tasmania today.

“Many New Zealanders take their mobile phone, tablet or laptop with them when they travel to Australia. They need to have confidence that they are purchasing services in a competitive market. If this investigation finds they are not, then regulatory intervention will be considered,” says Joyce.

The decision to launch a joint investigation was made following a study launched in May last year. The investigation will be conducted by the Ministry of Economic Development and Australia's Department of Broadband, Communications and Digital Economy.

Following the investigation a draft decision will be released for public comment with a final decision expected in early 2012.

InternetNZ policy director Jordan Carter said in a column in Computerworld earlier this year: "ICT Minister Steven Joyce and his counterpart in Australia Senator Stephen Conroy will be looking at the situation this year. I hope they agree there is a problem and that they tell their officials to sort it out."

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