in brief The Australian competition tribunal has ruled that Telstra should not be exempted from supplying wholesale line rental services in parts of metropolitan Australia.
The ACCC in August decided to exempt Telstra from providing services in metro exchange areas where four or more competitors were renting the company's copper loop, or where the exchange areas had 14,000 customers or more.
The tribunal did not feel that the reasoning behind the ACCC's decision was sound.
"The problem is that ... the fact of entry by one firm, or even by more than one firm, of itself does not establish that the incumbent is either presently restrained or is likely to be subject to the constraints of the competitive process in the future," the tribunal said.
ACCC chairman Graeme Samuel said the decision had been a matter of judgement and accepted that the tribunal had reasons for its decision. "As with all court and Tribunal decisions, the ACCC will review those reasons and consider the implications for the ongoing performance of its regulatory functions," he said in a statement.