‘Declare’ if you dare, NICTA tells minister after submarine showdown

1 Mar 2013

Papua New Guinea telecoms regulator the National Information and Communications Technology Authority (NICTA) has announced that it has made a recommendation to Minister for Information and Communications Jimmy Miringtoro, that he designate certain wholesale services relating to access to submarine cable landing station facilities and transmission capacity on international submarine cables as ‘declared services’. [Generally speaking, before access-seekers can gain access to a service, it must be ‘declared’.] Under the NICTA Act of 2009, any telecoms company that supplies a ‘declared service’ must comply with non-discrimination obligations. Those obligations help create a level playing field by preventing suppliers of wholesale services from supplying those services on terms that give preference to themselves and unfairly disadvantage competitors. The wholesale price charged for a declared service must also be cost-based in the interests of fair competition. NICTA’s recommendation follows a six-month public inquiry that found that Telikom PNG had a monopoly in the market for wholesale capacity on, and access to, international fibre-optic submarine cables.