Communications Minister Simon Bridges recently announced the reappointment of Dr Stephen Gale as Telecommunications Commissioner and as a member of the Commerce Commission.
As New Zealand’s primary competition regulatory agency, the Commerce Commission enforces legislation that aims to promote competition in the nation’s markets.
Following the recommendation of the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Commerce Commission members are appointed by the Governor-General.
Members are appointed based on their knowledge of, and experience in, areas relevant to the Commission's interests.
Specifically, the Telecommunications Commissioner is appointed on the recommendation of the Minister for Communications and Information Technology.
Dr Gale was initially appointed as the Telecommunications Commissioner in July 2012. Before this appointment, and since July 2010, he was an Associate Commissioner.
Dr Gale holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge, and previously specialised in infrastructure economics (energy, telco and transport) and competition proceedings at the consulting firm Castalia.
Dr Gale has been reappointed for a further three years starting on 12 July.
“The reappointment of Dr Gale recognises his valuable knowledge and expertise in competition and pricing issues, and the significant contribution he has made to the work of the Commission over a number of years,” comments Bridges.
Bridges says that with the review of the Telecommunications Act, the telecommunications sector is going through a significant transition.
“The role of the Commissioner continues to be of vital importance as unique issues may emerge that require specialist understanding of the sector."
Bridges concludes, “Dr Gale’s reappointment provides the stability and continuity needed at this time.”