Telstra to appeal ACCC, Vocus, iiNet price hike case

Telstra will appeal a judgment handed down by the Federal Court that saw Australia's largest telco lose out to the ACCC, Vocus Communications and several iiNet subsidiaries.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

The case between Telstra and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), along with Vocus Communications and iiNet subsidiaries Adam Internet and Chime Communications is set for another round of hearings as Telstra will appeal the Federal Court's decision.

Brought down last month, the judgment determined that the ACCC had jurisdiction to making a ruling in the dispute between Telstra and its wholesale customers over raising the cost for access to its telephone exchanges and underground ducts. At the time, Telstra was ordered to pay costs.

Initially brought to the ACCC by Vocus, Adam Internet, and Chime, under the Telcommunications Act, the ACCC determined that it did not have the power to act as an arbitrator in the matter, and welcomed the court ruling that the commission did have the power.

The case looked headed for arbitration, but Telstra today said that it would appeal, and believes it acted in accordance with its contract and there are no grounds for dispute.

"We disagree with the decision and are seeking clarification on some important points relating to our contractual relationship with these customers," Telstra said in a statement.

The appeal was lodged in the Federal Court on April 2, with an initial directions hearing in before Chief Justice James Allsop this afternoon. A callover is scheduled for April 30.

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