Telecom NZ probe launched

1 Sep 2009

New Zealand’s Commerce Commission has announced that it will launch an investigation into Telecom NZ’s alleged breach of its Operational Separation Undertakings (OSU), the National Business Review reports. Last year the OSU was imposed upon the incumbent to create a division between its retail and wholesale divisions, in an attempt to ensure equal access to its network. Last week, the Independent Oversight Group (IOG), which consists of three independent members and two Telecom NZ appointees, found Telecom Wholesale’s charges to CallPlus and Woosh were in violation of the legally binding OSU. Although the IOG has no authority of its own, the Commerce Commission can instigate investigations on the back of decisions by the watchdog, as it has done today. Telecom NZ could be fined up to NZD10 million (USD6.83 million) a day for breaching the OSU, or NZD500,000 a day until the breach is corrected. The Commerce Commission says it expects to reach a decision by October 9.