Telecommunications Competition Regulation

Inquiry report

This inquiry report was released on 21 December 2001.

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Cover, Copyright, Signing Page, Terms of reference, Contents, Abbreviations and explanations, Key messages, Overview, Recommendations

1 Why this inquiry matters
1.1 The importance of telecommunications
1.2 The future of telecommunications in Australia
1.3 Background to the regulatory environment
1.4 Scope of the report 
1.5 The broad telecommunications framework
1.6 The Commission’s approach to the inquiry
1.7 Other inquiries and reports
1.8 WTO commitments
1.9 Consultation
1.10 Report structure

2 Competition issues
2.1 Overview of the report’s analytical framework
2.2 What are the prima facie rationales for regulatory intervention?
2.3 Regulatory options
2.4 Two critical concepts: markets and convergence
2.5 The risks of regulatory failure

3 Telecommunications industry
3.1 Introduction
3.2 Who are the main players?
3.3 Overview of telecommunications industry
3.4 Nature of main service providers
3.5 Infrastructure investment

4 State of competition
4.1 Introduction
4.2 Competition in telecommunications
4.3 Assessing the state of competition
4.4 Local access services
4.5 Local fixed telephony services
4.6 Long distance telephony services
4.7 Mobile services 
4.8 Fixed and mobile telephony
4.9 Internet services
4.10 Data services
4.11 Broadband services — residential
4.12 Has effective competition developed sufficiently to dismantle regulations?

5 Anti-competitive conduct
5.1 Competition, anti-competitive conduct and regulation
5.2 Establishing assessment criteria
5.3 Regulatory approaches
5.4 Experience under Part XIB
5.5 Assessment
5.6 Policy options

6 Information provisions and reporting requirements
6.1 Tariff filing directions
6.2 Section 155 of the Trade Practices Act
6.3 Record keeping rules
6.4 ACCC reporting functions
6.5 Participants’ views
6.6 Conclusions

7 Telecommunications access: current arrangements and their use
7.1 Introduction and guide to access in the inquiry
7.2 The telecommunications access regime
7.3 The use of Part XIC

8 Rationale for access
8.1 Introduction
8.2 What regime will best encourage efficient competition in final markets?
8.3 Is there a rationale for a specific telecommunications access regime?

9 Scope of the access regime
9.1 Introduction
9.2 The objects of access
9.3 Assessing the existing declaration criteria
9.4 Narrowing the scope of the competition tests with auxiliary requirements
9.5 New declaration criteria
9.6 Maintaining incentives for investment
9.7 Monitoring as an alternative to declaration
9.8 Exemptions
9.9 The duration of declaration

10 Evaluating institutions and processes
10.1 Introduction
10.2 One or two regulators of competition regulation?
10.3 Specific versus generic regulators
10.4 Decision makers: courts, bureaucrats and others
10.5 The right processes
10.6 Efficient use of regulatory resources
10.7 Avoiding regulatory errors and reducing business uncertainty
10.8 Decentralised decision making: the role of and incentive for commercial negotiations

11 Access pricing
11.1 Introduction
11.2 Are pricing principles useful?
11.3 Current pricing principles and practices
11.4 An access pricing framework
11.5 Are regulated access prices too low or too high?
11.6 How do existing approaches to telecommunications pricing fare?
11.7 More detailed pricing guidance
11.8 The impact of social regulations on efficient access pricing

12 Carrier licence conditions
12.1 Industry development plans
12.2 Facilities access
12.3 Network information

13 Standards and industry codes
13.1 Introduction
13.2 Current procedures
13.3 Participants’ views and discussion

14 Number portability
14.1 Introduction
14.2 Defining number portability
14.3 The rationale for regulation — why mandate number portability?
14.4 The current regulatory framework and its application
14.5 Evaluation of the implementation of number portability
14.6 The benefits and costs of implementing number portability
14.7 Pricing principles

15 Carrier pre-selection
15.1 Introduction
15.2 The rationale for regulation
15.3 The current regulatory framework and its application
15.4 Costs and benefits of carrier pre-selection
15.5 Options for refining the current regulatory requirements

16 Regional differences in competition
16.1 Introduction
16.2 Geographic differences in competition
16.3 Forms of competition in telecommunications markets
16.4 Infrastructure investment in regional areas
16.5 Should competition regulation take account of regional differences in competition?

17 Pay TV and regional telecommunications
17.1 Introduction
17.2 Ownership links and other key relationships
17.3 Access to pay TV content
17.4 Options for access to pay TV content
17.5 Anti-siphoning and digitisation

18 Universal service arrangements
18.1 Universal service regime
18.2 Competition and USOs
18.3 Process issues
18.4 Customer service guarantee
18.5 TTY equipment

A Regulatory background

B Participation

C Networks deployed by carriers

D Access pricing approaches

E Number portability

F Industry development plans

G Delays in the access regime

H The Australian pay TV industry

I Administrative and compliance costs

J Services declared under Part XIC