Regulation & legislation
The Telecommunications Act 1997 and the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 regulate all telecommunications industry participants, including NBN Co.
NBN Co specific requirements have been enacted by:
- the National Broadband Network Companies Act 2011; and
- the Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (National Broadband Network Measures - Access Arrangements) Act 2011.
These Acts implement policy commitments made by the Government when it announced the NBN policy on 7 April 2009: that the NBN will operate on a wholesale-only, open access and non-discriminatory basis and, by doing so, fundamentally reshape the structure of the Australian telecommunications sector and provide a platform for robust competition.
Supply of NBN Co services
NBN Co can supply services to:
- carriers and carriage service providers; and
- specified utilities,in which case the NBN Co services may only be used for the utilities' own use and must not be resupplied.
NBN corporations cannot supply content services, non-communications services or goods. The Communications Minister can require NBN Co to supply, or not supply particular services.
All services provided by NBN Co are 'declared services' (ie regulated) under Part XIC of the Competition and Consumer Act, and are subject to supply and non-discrimination requirements and oversight by the ACCC.
To ensure full transparency of terms and conditions of supply, NBN Co is required to publish all of its service offers.
NBN Co cannot discriminate in the supply of services between access seekers, or in activities related to the supply of those services, other than in relation to creditworthiness and non-compliance with terms and conditions.
NBN Co intends to supply its services under its Wholesale Broadband Agreement and to lodge a Special Access Undertaking with the ACCC that will operate with the Wholesale Broadband Agreement.
NBN Co must remain in full Commonwealth ownership until the Communications Minister declares that the National Broadband Network is built and fully operational. A sale of NBN Co can only occur after a Productivity Commission inquiry into the NBN regulatory framework has been considered by a Parliamentary Joint Committee.
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