NZ regulator to monitor fixed-to-mobile pricing

Staff writer
telecomasia.net
New Zealand’s Commerce Commission said it will start monitoring pricing for calls between fixed-line and mobile phones in the country after the regulator approved Vodafone’s acquisition of TelstraClear earlier this week.
 
The regulator gave the all-clear to the $690 million deal on Tuesday, after examining its potential impact on competition, but has subsequently added fixed-to-mobile price monitoring to its suite of telecommunications market monitoring under section 9A of the Telecommunications Act.
 
"The merger of Vodafone and TelstraClear will bring about major changes in the telecommunications sector. Now that the merger has been confirmed, we plan to observe its impact on fixed and mobile pricing – separately and in bundles – and monitor any changes in the market," said Dr Stephen Gale, Telecommunications Commissioner in a statement Thursday.
 
“We aren’t anticipating any anti-competitive pricing arrangements coming from the newly merged entity but we are required to monitor developments in the telecommunications sector,” he said.
 
Gale noted that the Commerce Commission already regulates mobile termination rates to minimize the barriers to competition in the mobile market, and monitors mobile pricing in case any barriers are raised by new pricing plans. “We have similar concerns in fixed-to-mobile pricing so will watch and see what fixed-to-mobile pricing plans appear in the market.”

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