Thursday, 30 June 2022 14:27

Gladys weighs in on Telstra/TPG merger Featured

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Former NSW Premier and now Optus managing director enterprise, business, and institutional Gladys Berejiklian says she's seen first-hand the devastating impact of floods and fires on regional communities and says if the Telstra/TPG merger proceeds customers will have less choice, be subject to higher prices, and be more vulnerable during natural disasters.

Berejiklian states Optus has lodged its submission to the ACCC earlier this week to highlight the negative impact it perceives will fall on consumers and businesses should the merger proceed.

"Regions need more communications infrastructure, not less," she said.

During times of regional disaster, "communications were so critical," she said. "Those ringing for help, people trying to find reassurance that their loved ones were safe and our brave first responders who relied on communication to perform what was being asked of them."

"Our regions need more telecommunications investment, better connectivity, and improved services – and the proposed Telstra/TPG network merger is a very big step backward," she stated.

Berejiklian states that improved outcomes will arise only from investing in more communications infrastructure and asserts "this is the opposite of what Telstra and TPG are proposing."

She says organisations wishing to seize the advantages of emerging technology must be able to access it affordably, and that a lack of competition will remove downward pressure on prices and ultimately stifle innovation.

"The pandemic saw a diverse range of businesses start up and grow in the regions, overcoming the 'tyranny of distance'. Many innovative businesses have created new job opportunities and provided a much-needed boost to local economies whose traditional industries were hampered by natural disasters. Communications and connectivity have been critical to this process," she said.

Optus has published its concerns with the proposed network merger online.

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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