ACCC varies fixed line services final access determinations

29 June 2012: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has completed its public inquiry into varying the fixed line services final access determinations (FADs).

The ACCC decided to temporarily vary the FADs and remove the obligation to supply certain regulated fixed voice services over the National Broadband Network (NBN). This variation commences on 29 June 2012 and ceases to have effect on the earlier of 31 March 2013, or the date on which Telstra can supply a wholesale NBN voice service.

The FADs set price and non-price terms and conditions for access to regulated fixed voice services. They create a benchmark that parties can fall back on when they have not negotiated alternative access terms. The FADs only apply where there is no commercial agreement between the parties. The current FADs expire on 30 June 2014.

Telstra requested the ACCC vary the FADs based on its temporary technical inability to provide access to a wholesale voice service over the NBN until the end of September 2012. At that time Telstra anticipates making its mass market NBN wholesale and retail services available. However, Telstra requested regulatory relief until March 2013 to accommodate any unforeseen delays in launching these services. 

In response to industry submissions to the public inquiry, the ACCC modified its preliminary views in relation to the scope and expiry date of the variation. The ACCC considers this variation will have a limited impact in terms of both the affected number of end-users and its timeframe.

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