Monday, 09 October 2017 11:27

ACCC wants to avoid regulatory imposition on NBN SAU variation Featured

ACCC wants to avoid regulatory imposition on NBN SAU variation Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

The competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, wants an industry-led outcome on the variations to the Special Access Undertaking for the national broadband network rather than regulatory imposition.

The ACCC announced on Monday it had put off making a decision on NBN Co’s proposed variation to its SAU until the company has undertaken further consultation with customers on its pricing model for the NBN.

And, the ACCC said in a statement that it is aware that NBN Co is already consulting with its customers — telecommunications companies that pay to access the NBN network — on potential alternatives to the current pricing model.

But ACCC chairman Rod Sims said, “We think an industry outcome on NBN pricing is the best solution and preferable to a regulatory outcome. We welcome NBN Co’s initiative here and will let the process run its course.

“However, since this consultation may result in a change to NBN Co’s pricing model, the ACCC does not consider it appropriate to make a decision on the SAU variation at this time.

“We do not think it is appropriate to make a decision on the SAU variation until the pricing consultation is further progressed.”

Sims says the ACCC will progress its consideration of other aspects of the SAU variation, including “certain non-price matters”, so that the ACCC will be able to finalise the process when a position has been reached on NBN Co’s pricing consultation.

NBN Co submitted a revised SAU variation in June to incorporate fibre-to-the-node, fibre-to-the-basement and hybrid fibre coaxial technologies (multi technology mix services) into the SAU, to reflect the current NBN model, and effectively extending the current SAU pricing arrangements to these MTM services.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - an iTWire treasure is a mentor and coach who volunteers also a writer and much valued founding partner of iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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