A proposal to protect Australian and New Zealand travellers from large international mobile roaming fees when they use their phones overseas is contained in a draft Bill to go before Parliament.
The Bill will empower the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to take coordinated regulatory action with New Zealand to tackle the high prices to consumers and businesses of trans‑Tasman mobile roaming services.
New deal for travellers
The proposed legislation will give the ACCC new powers to reduce prices and facilitate greater market competition, including price caps and access obligations on wholesale trans-Tasman mobile roaming services, as well as retail price caps on international mobile roaming services for any destination country.
The Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (International Mobile Roaming) Bill 2014 will be open to submissions from interested parties for the next month.
Its release follows a joint study conducted by the Australian and New Zealand Governments into trans-Tasman Mobile Roaming services last year. This investigation found that, although there has been a downward trend in the pricing and margins of these services, both pricing and margins remained high.
Submissions on the draft Bill should be made to the Department of Communications by 28 February.
Further information about the draft Bill and the consultation process is available at this PS News link.