House debates

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (Competition and Consumer Safeguards) Bill 2009

Third Reading

1:55 pm

Photo of Anthony AlbaneseAnthony Albanese (Grayndler, Australian Labor Party, Leader of the House) Share this | Hansard source

We will of course be supporting the Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (Competition and Consumer Safeguards) Bill 2009 as it stands, because this is important legislation for the future of the nation. We have already consulted extensively on this. Indeed, telecommunications analysts are supportive of this legislation. They are supportive of structural separation. This is important microeconomic reform to improve outcomes for consumers. Greater competition in the industry is what this is about. This is necessary regulatory reform that the opposition failed to do in 12 years in government. They now want the current government to hold back on reform. This is all about delay. This is what the Australian Information Industry Association chief, Ian Birks, said yesterday:

Obviously, any kind of slowdown in the acceptance of the legislation and the delivery of the NBN has a detrimental effect on how quickly we can achieve the benefits of a digital economy.

It is extraordinary that, over in the Senate, Senator Joyce understands the importance of structural separation, but, in this place, the shadow minister representing the shadow minister does not. This is an important reform. We will not be delayed on it. People have waited long enough for the National Broadband Network. We are taking action and this legislation should be supported. I commend the legislation to the House as it will have great benefits, particularly for the business community and those who live in rural and regional Australia.

Question put:

That this bill be now read a third time.


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