Monday, 16 January 2017 10:36

ACCC seeks industry feedback on broadband access services declaration

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ACCC seeks industry feedback on broadband access services declaration Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has issued a draft decision outlining the prices retail service providers will pay, in the absence of a commercial agreement, to acquire NBN-like fixed line superfast broadband wholesale services on non-NBN networks.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims says the ACCC expects that wholesale price changes will likely lead to lower prices for retail customers of superfast broadband providers.

Under the draft decision, the major SBAS and LBAS networks expected to be subject to the Final Access Determinations include those operated by Telstra (South Brisbane and Velocity Estates networks), TPG, Vocus, LBN Co, Opticomm, and OPENetworks.

“A key objective has been to ensure that retail service providers and customers supplied via SBAS and LBAS networks would not be any worse off than if they were supplied by the NBN,” Sims said.

“The draft prices have been set in line with NBN prices and will change with NBN prices over time. Prices will reflect the growth in traffic across the superfast broadband sector, which will continue to drive down the average cost of wholesale aggregation services.”

The commission says it has been mindful of the regulatory burden its decisions can place on small providers and the draft decision proposes to exempt those SBAS providers supplying less than 12,000 end users (down from 20,000 in the SBAS interim access determination).

“This is on the basis of technical advice that the compliance costs for these operators are expected to be high, relative to the expected wholesale revenues and the likely benefits to end users,” Sims said.

The ACCC has also provided for prices to incorporate the government’s proposed industry levy on superfast local access lines to help fund NBN Co’s supply of non-commercial regional fixed wireless and satellite services.

To access the draft decision report and draft FADs click here.

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