Telstra has this morning confirmed documents detailing its structural separation have been lodged with the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission.
The documents detail how Telstra plans to undertake the separation, following the release of draft instruments in June which will be used to guide the separation undertaking as per the structural separation undertaking (SSU) outline.
It’s believed Telstra will commit to the restructure being completed by the 1st July, 2018, by which point in time most Australian premises will have been disconnected from Telstra’s copper and HFC networks and moved on the new National Broadband Network (NBN).
The separation detailed in the SSU will be enforceable by the ACCC and the Federal Court if Telstra fails to comply.
“The submission of these documents is another important step in finalising Telstra’s participation in the rollout of the NBN,” Telstra CEO David Thodey said this morning.
“The SSU delivers robust, effective and appropriate equivalence and transparency during the migration period in a way that avoids the complexity, cost and industry disruption that would be caused by functional separation.”
The SSU also sets out how the company will provide its wholesale customers with “transparency and equivalence” during the transition from Telstra’s own network to the NBN.
As part of the transparency and equivalence, Telstra will undertake a number of steps to ensure it avoids having to undergo a functional separation.
Steps include publishing a rate card for fixed line access services and providing it to customers after the SSU is finalised and the formation of a new Independent Telecommunications Adjudicator (ITA), whose appointment and charter will be decided upon by the ACCC.
The ITA would amongst other things be responsible for promptly and satisfactorily resolve equivalence complaints without the need for court or regulatory involvement and within a six week timeframe.
Meanwhile the migration plan will reveal the steps Telstra plans on taking to disconnect its customers from its copper and HFC networks and switch them across onto the NBN.
It’ll also provide wholesalers control over when their customers are switched over to the NBN, with Telstra confirming it’ll provide the capabilities for wholesalers to cancel services at “any time” before the required disconnection date.
This means wholesalers will be better able to align orders for connections on the NBN, minimising disruptions for customers.
The ACCC will soon invite members of the public to comment on Telstra’s submissions.