Macquarie Telecom seeks ACCC probe of Telstra wholesale practices

Complaint alleges Telstra abused market power

Macquarie Telecom has accused Telstra of “monopolistic behaviour.”

Macquarie lodged a complaint today with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission saying that Telstra has misused its market power to lock regional consumers and businesses into sub-standard services and limit their choice of mobile providers.

The telecom competitor alleged that Telstra has refused to supply wholesale services where it is the exclusive mobile network, refused to offer 4G services to wholesale providers, forced wholesale customers to impose smaller data caps than Telstra applies itself and has its own retail business overseeing and approving wholesale contracts.

“Macquarie has asked the ACCC to urgently investigate and act to stop Telstra from undermining competition in regional markets,” Matt Healy, Macquarie Telecom national executive of industry and policy, said in a statement.

“Telstra’s dominance of mobile markets has increased in recent years, and it uses this dominance to prevent competition from gaining a foothold in fixed line and corporate markets as well as by bundling services together.

“Macquarie hopes the ACCC moves quickly and decisively to end this monopolistic behaviour.”

Telstra responded that mobile “is a very competitive market, with three network operators and many more retailers competing on coverage, service, technology and price.”

Telstra provides wholesale services to 12 MVNO customers and continues to invest in the platform, it said.

The telco added that it has invested billions in its network to serve all Australians.

“No company has done more to provide telecommunications services to regional Australia and we offer uniform national pricing, so people in the bush enjoy the same prices as people in the city.”

Adam Bender covers telco and enterprise tech issues for Computerworld and is the author of dystopian sci-fi novels We, The Watched and Divided We Fall. Follow him on Twitter: @WatchAdam

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU, or take part in the Computerworld conversation on LinkedIn: Computerworld Australia

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Tags Telstramacquarie telecomAustralian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)competitionwholesalecomplaint

More about Australian Competition and Consumer CommissionAustralian Competition and Consumer CommissionMacquarie TelecomTelstra CorporationTelstra Corporation

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