Telstra customers pay for local presence plan

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Telstra customers pay for local presence plan

Telstra has opened for public comment its latest regional and rural presence plan but said customers would wear the cost of it preparing the ‘unnecessary’ document.

The carrier is required under its licence conditions to prepare and open for public consultation the plan, which addresses Telstra’s local presence in regional, rural and remote Australia.

In a statement today, Geoff Booth, head of Telstra Country Wide, said the carrier was already committed to upgrades and network improvements in regional and rural Australia to remain competitive.

He suggested the plan was ‘just one example of the unnecessary and costly regulation imposed solely on Telstra and not other telecommunications providers’.

“Telstra continues to value customers in rural, regional and remote Australia in their own right without the need for a Rural and Regional Presence Plan,” said Booth.

“Such a plan is not required of any of other 260 licensed carriers currently operating in Australia.”

He continued: “Telstra’s commitment to delivering leading products and services to our customers in regional, rural and remote Australia is of the highest order and is unchallenged by any of our competitors.

“This has nothing to do with regulation. If we want to increase sales and retain customers in a highly competitive market, we have to constantly improve the value we offer to customers.”

Booth said that ‘continuing’ upgrades to wireless broadband and improved mobile services over the Next G network ‘are demonstrable proof of our commitment’ in these areas.

Comment on the draft plan closes on 20th February.
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