Telstra sale could trigger election

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The full sale of Telstra is back on the parliamentary agenda, after the federal government reintroduced the bill.

The Senate had already rejected the bill once, leading the government to threaten to call a double dissolution election over the issue if it was refuted again.

Minister for Communications, IT and the Arts, Daryl Williams, who re-introduced the bill to the House of Representatives this morning, said the government remained committed to selling its 50.1 percent stake. 

“Selling the balance of the government's shareholding in Telstra is in Australia's national interest. It is in the interest of Telstra itself, its 1.8 million shareholders, the wider telecommunications sector and, most importantly, the Australian public,” Williams said.

“In the modern telecommunications environment, it is competition that drives new services and lower prices, and regulation provides the safeguards to protect consumers. “The Australian government's ability to regulate the delivery of telecommunications services has absolutely nothing to do with who owns Telstra,” he added.

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