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Govt seeks advice on Telecom separation - Updated

15 Sep 2010

The government is asking the industry and the public for feedback on issues that might arise if Telecom was to structurally separate, as it wants to.

“Telecom New Zealand has recently announced that it is considering structural separation of its network and retail businesses in the context of the Government’s Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) Initiative,” said Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Steven Joyce.

Crown Fibre Holdings recently announced Telecom as one of the 14 short-listed parties for the UFB roll out.

Joyce says it makes sense for the government to consider the implications of a structural separation as they would be a “major change” to the industry and would impact on key elements of the regime governing the industry.

“Should Telecom decide to structurally separate, any changes to the regulatory regime the government may adopt would be robust and well-informed and tested by the industry and key stakeholders.”

Joyce says structural separation would impact the regulatory regime for copper services, Telecom’s operational separation undertakings and the local service Telecommunications Service Obligations (TSO).

More information is available from the Ministry of Economic Development’s website.

The deadline for written submissions is 5.00pm, October 15th.

Read up on how Telecom's road to separation came about here.

Update: Internet New Zealand was out of the blocks first saying it welcomes the opportunity.

Chief Executive Vikram Kumar said, "At first glance the discussion document provides a useful structure for exploring issues that may arise. InternetNZ will prepare a detailed submission following the workshops and consultation with our members.

“New Zealand’s telecommunications landscape would alter substantially should Telecom separate and we encourage anyone with an interest in the future of the Internet in New Zealand to pay attention now and ensure their views are heard.”