Feds kick off mobile roaming discussion

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Feds kick off mobile roaming discussion

Aims to lower trans-Tasman roaming costs.

The Governments of Australia and New Zealand have taken aim at mobile roaming 'bill shock' in a newly released discussion paper that seeks residents' feedback.

Launched yesterday, the discussion paper highlights "some concern" about excessive prices and that transparency and consumer awareness of prices is low.

New Zealand's Ministry of Economic Development and Australia's Department of Communications, Broadband and Digital Economy (DBCDE) said there was "some evidence" of market failure.

The agencies intend to analyse where the failure occurred, its extent, and appropriate remedies, in hopes of facilitating trade across the Tasman Sea.

"Ultimately, the long-term aim is to have a seamless trans-Tasman business environment in which it is as easy for Australian and New Zealand companies to do business in the other country as it is at home," the agencies wrote.

"This will enhance the ability of Australia and New Zealand to increase national productivity, maintain and drive job creation and foster international competitiveness."

The discussion paper launched as part of the Australian Government's response to its 2009 parliamentary inquiry into international mobile roaming.

Both agencies invited written submissions from residents until Friday, 2 July.

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