Telecom clarifies its commercial bitstream service offer
25 August 2004
Issued 25 August 2004
The Commerce Commission has received additional information from Telecom New Zealand Limited on the characteristics of its commercial bitstream service. Earlier this month, the Commission identified significant differences between Telecom's commercial bitstream service from the regulated Unbundled Bitstream Service (UBS) that will come into force on 2 September under the Telecommunications Act 2001.
Telecom has acknowledged to the Commission that the regulated UBS service has features and characteristics that may not be currently offered as part of its commercial bitstream service, and that the regulated UBS service will be available as well as Telecom's current commercial service.
"This clarification by Telecom will enable ISPs to make informed choices in relation to Telecom's bitstream commercial offering, while maintaining the options to seek access to the regulated UBS service where consistent with the Telecommunications Act," said Telecommunications Commissioner Douglas Webb.
On 22 December 2003, the Commission released its final report on the investigation into unbundling the local loop network and the fixed public data network. As part of its report, the Commission recommended that access to an asymmetric DSL bitstream service, suitable for the residential and SME broadband market, should be a regulated services under the Telecommunications Act 2001. The Commission also recommended that access to a backhaul transmission service be regulated to complement the bitstream service.
On 19 May 2004, the Minister of Communications accepted the Commission's recommendations, subject to some minor alterations which needed to be made to the wording of the bitstream service description to be incorporated within Schedule 1 of the Act. On 24 June 2004, the Commission provided the Minister with an updated version of the bitstream service description.
On 13 July 2004, the Minister formally accepted the Commission's recommendations to designate both the unbundled bitstream service and related backhaul transmission service under the Act.
On 2 August 2004, the Telecommunications Act 2001 Schedule 1 was amended by Order in Council, to include the bitstream and bitstream backhaul services as designated services under the Act. This order comes into force on 2 September 2004.
Section 22 of the Telecommunications Act states:
22 When application may not be made
Despite section 20, no person may apply for a determination if -
(a) the persons who would otherwise be parties to the determination have an agreement for the supply of the service for part of all of the specified period of time; or
(b) those persons have agreed not to have any term for the supply of the service determined by the Commission; or
(c) that person has not made reasonable attempts to negotiate the terms of supply of the service with the person who would otherwise be a party to the determination; or
(d) the applicable conditions in relation to the service (if any) have not been met
Osmond Borthwick, Manager, Network Access
Phone work (04) 924 3667
Jackie Maitland, Communications Manager
Phone work (04) 924 3708, mobile 029 924 3708