The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has released a draft decision to keep regulating the wholesale asymmetrical digital subscriber line (ADSL) until the NBN rollout is complete in order to promote competition in broadband markets.
The ACCC said continuing to regulate the wholesale ADSL service for another five years while the rollout continued would be beneficial to customers.
ACCC Commissioner, Cristina Cifuentes, said, “Telstra retains its dominant position in both the wholesale and retail markets for the supply of ADSL fixed-line broadband services on a national level.
“Continuing regulation will ensure network providers continue to have access to Telstra’s copper network at reasonable prices.
“This will encourage them to continue competing in the retail market to develop and offer different ADSL broadband products to meet the needs of customers as they prepare to shift to the NBN.”
The wholesale ADSL service is a point-to-point service which enables retail service providers to deliver high speed fixed-line broadband internet services to their customers, using another network provider’s equipment.
The wholesale ADSL service was first declared in February 2012. The ACCC is required to review the wholesale ADSL declaration before it expires on 13 February 2017.
The ACCC can declare a service if it is satisfied that doing so would promote the long-term interests of customers.
Once a service is declared, a network owner must provide access to the service upon request and where commercial agreement cannot be reached, regulated price and non-price terms determined by the ACCC will apply.
Declaration ensures all service providers have access to the infrastructure they need to supply competitive communications services to customers.
The ACCC expects to finalise its decision in early 2017 before the current declaration expires.