Vodafone Hutchison Australia (VHA) has filed for a judicial review of the domestic roaming inquiry process carried out by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). In a press release, the operator claimed its grounds for the appeal were that the regulator had requested final submissions in its inquiry, but had failed to provide a detailed description of the roaming service. VHA has argued that, by law, this description should have been provided and is ‘fundamental to the process’. Indeed, in the absence of a description it claims it is not possible for the ACCC to conduct its analysis of whether regulating domestic roaming would be in the interest of end users or not, while suggesting the situation means interested parties cannot provide ‘relevant and meaningful submissions’ to the inquiry.
Having made its filing to the Federal Court, VHA said in announcing the move: ‘We feel so strongly about the impact on consumers, we are taking legal action as we believe the inquiry process which produced the draft decision was flawed … The process is failing consumers because it is too vague. The decision on domestic roaming is too important to regional Australia for the inquiry to continue in a flawed way.’