First broadband industry working group meeting next Friday

Telecom wastes no time getting industry consultation going

Telecom has proposed holding the initial wholesale working group meeting next Friday to get the process going, according Mark Ratcliffe, COO of Technology and Enterprises

This follows sharply on the heels of Telecom CEO Theresa Gattung's June 16 proposal to set up consultative industry working groups for a quick rollout of the new services envisaged in Cunliffe's recently introduced regulatory package. However, Gattung's proposal has been met with disbelief by the industry, and is viewed as yet another confusion ploy and stalling tactic.

In a letter obtained by Computerworld, Ratcliffe reiterates Telecom's position that the industry will run the consulative process, and not the incumbent. The purpose of Friday's meeting is to reach a consensus on a schedule of work for consultative groups, as well as how they should be structured.

Telecom would like the scope of the groups to be decided in that meeting, as well who can be a member, together with a chairperson and a secretariat. Ratcliffe says there are a number of views on how the working groups should be assembled and adds that Friday's meeting will be an opportunity to air these.

Malcolm Alexander, chairman of the Telecommunications Carriers' Forum (TCF) has been asked by Telecom to hold the reins at the initial meeting. He won't be there in his role as TCF chairman, but someone who can help guide the meeting towards consensus, Ratcliffe says.

The meeting will be held at the Crowne Plaza hotel on Albert Street in Auckland, from 9.45 onwards on Friday July 7

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