ACCC suspends assessment of NBN Co special access undertaking

20 June 2012: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is suspending its assessment of the Special Access Undertaking (SAU) lodged by NBN Co in the expectation that NBN Co will soon lodge a revised undertaking.

NBN Co lodged the SAU for assessment by the ACCC on 5 December 2011, setting out a proposed framework for access to NBN Co’s fibre, wireless and satellite networks.  The ACCC has subsequently undertaken significant consultation with stakeholders regarding NBN Co’s proposals.

NBN Co has recently indicated to the ACCC that it intends to submit an amended SAU.  NBN Co has provided an outline of its proposed amendments to the ACCC, and is in the process of developing this into a detailed undertaking.  This outline will be published on the ACCC website.

“NBN Co has taken a step forward in developing this proposal in response to feedback on its original SAU.  It is a constructive move towards establishing reasonable access arrangements for the NBN,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

“The ACCC sees merit in the proposal.  For example, the proposed modular design balances NBN Co’s requirement for certainty on long-term cost recovery with the need to undertake regular reviews of the detailed terms of access.”

“Similarly, the proposal that the revised SAU will specify reference offers and use a building block model to determine revenue constraints on NBN Co appears to provide some reasonable constraints on NBN Co’s pricing over time.”

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