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NBN Co submits revised SAU variation

30 Nov 2022

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published a revised proposed variation to NBN Co’s Special Access Undertaking (SAU), along with the material that the latter has already provided in support of its proposal.

The ACCC states that the SAU is a ‘key part’ of the regulation of Australia’s National Broadband Network (NBN), given it sets the rules for broadband providers to access the infrastructure over the coming decades, including minimum service standards and wholesale price controls. Previously, in July 2022 NBN Co “withdrew an earlier proposal” for a variation of its SAU, at which date the regulator noted that a consultation on those initial plans had identified ‘a range of potential issues’, while it highlighted the fact that submissions that consultation from the telecommunications industry were ‘generally not supportive’.

Now, in light of the updated variation proposals, the ACCC has said that, upon receipt of the remainder of the supporting material from the wholesale operator, it will confirm that it meets the ACCC’s disclosure requirements. Meanwhile, it added that it intends to issue a public statement on the proposals when it publishes its consultation paper in relation to NBN Co’s proposal, ‘likely in early 2023’.

ACCC Commissioner Anna Brakey was cited as saying of the matter: ‘We’ve published NBN Co’s revised variation proposal today in the interest of transparency, so interested parties can begin scrutinising it ahead of the remainder of NBN Co’s supporting materials becoming available … It is too early to comment on the substance of this revised proposal, but we will develop views to test with stakeholders when we release our consultation paper.’

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