Telecom, Clear bury the hatchet

Telecom and Clear have agreed on a 'Relationship Package' that establishes a 'comprehensive clean slate' between the two old foes of the telecommunications market.

Telecom and Clear have agreed on a 'Relationship Package' that establishes a "comprehensive clean slate" between the two old foes of the telecommunications market.

The package includes wholesale and resale rights for Clear to Telecom's JetStream DSL service.

The timing of the announcement - the day before the Ministerial Inquiry into Telecommunications releases its final recommendations on the shape of the market - will be seen as significant.

Negotiations were completed at 2am this morning and media were notified only 90 minutes before this morning's announcement.

The package, effective October 1, incorporates agreements on interconnection and wholesale-related matters and, according to a joint statement this morning, "commits both sides to a more open and commercial relationship".

The two companies have also have also settled all court proceedings between them, including Commerce Act and 0867 related matters. A few remaining" minor legal issues" will be subject to further discussions with a view to settling them as well. But Telecom CEO Theresa Gattung said at a press conference this morning that the settlement did not include action taken aghainst Telecom by the free ISP i4free and subsequently supported by Clear.

Highlights of the Relationship Package include:

- A set of principles under which both companies commit to a more open and commercial relationship.

- An Interconnection package that sees CLEAR pay Telecom a net figure of $35million over the year for.

- Origination and termination by Telecom of 1,828 million minutes of long-distance calls by CLEAR customers.

- 49 million minutes of CLEAR-Telecom mobile calls.

- The settlement of other matters, including a compromise on the termination of Internet dial-up minutes (calls to ISPs). Under this compromise, both sides reserve their positions on Internet dial-up termination and, as part of the broader arrangements, CLEAR does not receive payment for Internet dial-up termination.

- Excess minutes outside the package will be charged at an agreed rate.

- A data package giving Clear wholesale and resale access to Telecom's JetStream, a DSL service

- A confidential litigation settlement under which both parties withdraw from the court proceedings currently between them.

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