ACCC to G9: More certainty on medium term prices please.

The ACCC decided today to reject the G9 proposal of offering FTTN at realistic prices to the Australian public.

The rejection wasn’t due to prices.
It wasn’t due to technology.

It was due to a simple issue identified in the Special Access Undertaking, they didn’t commit to any auditable process for the medium and long term of the undertaking, which leaves prices uncertain.

I agree with Graeme Samuel here, he is doing a great job at protecting consumers, although I would certainly trust the G9 proposal over anything from Telstra, I believe that if the G9 left prices in the medium term open ended, they would have the oppourtunity (but likely not follow it through) to raise prices excessively.

The ACCC strongly agreed with the G9’s pricing, so that sets a strong point for Telstra to basically follow from. If Telstra want FTTN, under a Rudd government, who have consistently said the ACCC would be deciding price and competitve terms, then they’ll have to come down to reasonable pricing such as that of the G9 proposal.

Ideally, we’ll see movement on a replacement G9 proposal, one which shows the prices as fair and commits to an auditable process in the long term for ensuring the medium and long term prices remain fair.

And we’ll see an alternative proposal from Telstra.

Surely they both won’t wait for the governments calls for tenders on a broadband proposal, which will essentially go past the ACCC first anyway, and get decided on for the same points.

If anything, its a speed increase on the proposal to determine if it is indeed worthy or not, before being subject to the panel when Conroy kicks their collective arses into order, the panel will contain the ACCC, as well as experts from telecommunications. Not a bad approach.

The broadband market is going to soon enough take some sharp turns and see a even more competitive market take place.
This will hopefully start mid 2008 and just get started for the lead up to 2009 where even more activity will take place to generate a competitive market.


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