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No privatisation of Telstra

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Senator Vicki Bourne Senator for New South Wales Australian Democrats* Communications Spokesperson

7 February, 1996 MEDIA RELEASE.\\νΝν.:.Λ..'v ■ ■ v ·· '· · ; — . -··· · · , · ·.··..,·...................... .. · · ·,··· y'y ··'··· ·.··.··.· v v . y . . . . ·> ? · '·â– > · \ α ' 96/84 ?>V>WV v : mva ■ ■



“The Democrats welcome the National Party joining the Democrats in opposing the partial privatisation of Telstra, said Australian spokesperson on Communications Senator Vicki Bourne.. .

Columnist Dennis Atkins in the Courier Mail (6/2/96) reports Queensland National Party MP Bob Katter’s concern that even a partially privatised Telstra will mean much higher telephone prices for Katteris constituents in country Queensland. .

“W e have long held similar fears and the Democrats* 20 Point Plan for Better Rural Communications argues against even partially privatising Telstra.

“The Democrats are concerned that, if Telstra's board includes members with strictly commercial objectives and loyalties to private shareholders, expenditure on Australian research, on Australian products and on services to Australians in rural and remote areas will be redirected to more profitable urban areas, or off shore.

“As the primary provider of telephone services to the public, particularly in regional, rural and remote Australia, the Democrats believe it is vital that Telstra’s direction, decisions and profits remain in Government hands.

“Telstra will play a pivotal role in carrying the ‘information age* to country Australia. How far and how fast the information age goes beyond the cities will depend on whether Telstra’s board is directed by Government policy or whether commercial considerations form a part of Telstra's decision making.

While we welcome National Party support in opposing the partial privatisation of Telstra, we fear that, when it comes to a vote in Parliament, the National Party will vote with their Coalition partners and against the concerns of rural and remote Australians.

Contact Senator Bourne: 02 247 3377 OR 018 205 407

K eep in g the S enate S tron g ' ■ __________________________ A U S T R A L I A N

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