Telecom NZ gets separation extension

New Zealand Communications Minister Steven Joyce has given the country's former monopoly telco Telecom NZ an extension on its deadline for overhauling its IT systems to deal with mandated separation of its operations.

New Zealand Communications Minister Steven Joyce has given the country's former monopoly telco Telecom NZ an extension on its deadline for overhauling its IT systems to deal with mandated separation of its operations.

A statement by the minister's office said the telco had established it was not able to deliver six major milestones in its operational separation progress by the due date of 31 December 2009.

Telecom NZ is in the process of splitting its business into three as it attempts to keep its retail, network and wholesale operations separate from each other, in a plan approved in March 2008.

"The approved variation to the Undertakings sets a new date of 30 September 2010 for implementation of logical separation of shared information systems containing customer confidential information," Joyce's office said in a statement.

"The approved variation also exempts a small number of aging PSTN information systems that contain technical information about the PSTN, from the requirement for logical separation." PSTN refers to the public switched telephone network, or in other words, the old copper analog telephone network.