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Telstra broadbrand pricing regime condemned.



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Carmen Lawrence - Telstra Broadband Pricing Regime Condemned http://www.alp.org.au//media/0601/clmstel060601.html Friday, 08 June 2001

Telstra Broadband Pricing Regime Condemned Carmen Lawrence - Shadow Minister for Industry, Innovation and Technology

Media Statement - 6 June 2001

Shadow Minister for Industry, Innovation and Technology, Dr Carmen Lawrence today condemned Telstra's decision to cap data access on its Freedom Plan broadband services.

"Broadband services are a vital part of a competitive, mature information economy, allowing timely access to range of important data services, and the rapid communication of business and domestic information.

"Australia is already having to play catch up to develop affordable consumer broadband facilities, and Telstra's decision this week will inevitably impact on consumer confidence, particularly in the high Internet use industry and research sectors, and will ultimately have a negative impact on the adoption of broadband services in Australia.

"Telstra's pricing for broadband services has been the subject of concern for some time, with industry and analysts alike labelling Telstra's broadband pricing as prohibitive and out of step with international benchmarks.

"Telstra's competitive practices have also been questioned by the ICT industry, with accusations that Telstra has deliberately impeded the development of competing yet interconnecting broadband services by delaying the interconnection of services, or through unfair use of market share.

"At a time when the Howard Government is being forced to return much of the proceeds of its sale of the first two tranches of Telstra to the carrier in order to facilitate its investment in improving services, it seems ironic that the same Government remains content to sit on its hands on this important issue, and has failed to step in to open up consumer broadband markets in Australia." Authorised by Geoff Walsh, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600.

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