ACCC seeks comment on Layer 2 bitstream service

The watchdog has released a discussion paper, detailing the non-NBN local bitstream access services in order to establish its role in regulating it

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has called for submissions into the draft description for a Layer 2 bitstream service.

The discussion paper detailing the service, also known as local bitstream access services and used to carry digital data on telecommunications networks, is the initial step in issuing a declaration to establish the watchdog’s role in regulating the service.

The declaration, scheduled to be completed by October this year, will cover the “last mile” fibre to premises on networks not owned by NBN Co. However, the commission remains in negotiations with NBN Co in expectation it will lodge a “special access undertaking” for its Layer 2 bitstream service.

“Given the importance of these networks in providing access to high-speed broadband, the ACCC strongly encourages owners and retailers providing services covered by the local bitstream access service description to make a submission,” ACCC chairman, Rod Sims, said in a statement.

In order to declare the service, which is required under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, the watchdog must establish a service description specifying which services are to be covered by the declaration.

It will apply to services supplied using a designated network, used to supply a Layer 2 bitstream service with a download transmission data rate with average speeds of 25 Megabits per second or higher. It will not apply to the NBN or to wireless or satellite networks.

According to the discussion paper, once a service is declared, the ACCC must commence a public inquiry, within 30 days, into making an access determination. The access determination must specify a price or method of ascertaining a price for the service.

Submissions close Friday 16 September 2011.

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Tags Rod SimsAustralian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)acccLayer 2 bitstreamnbn coNational Broadband Network (NBN)telcosTelecommunicationsNBN

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