Digital radio services

Access undertaking - Mandurah24 September 2019

On 2 September 2019, the ACCC received a proposed access undertaking in relation to the commencement of Digital Radio services in Mandurah, Western Australia. The undertaking was lodged by Digital Radio Broadcasting Mandurah Pty Ltd.

The ACCC is commencing an inquiry to seek views on whether the access undertaking should be accepted. The ACCC is today releasing a consultation and position paper for comment.

The ACCC is responsible for implementing and enforcing the digital radio access regime under the Radiocommunications Act 1992 (the Act), Broadcasting Services Act 1992 and the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

The access regime allows broadcasters to receive access to Digital Radio Multiplex Transmitter services on reasonable terms and conditions and ensures providers of these services do not discriminate anti-competitively between broadcasters. An access undertaking is assessed against the Digital Radio Multiplex Transmitter Licences (Decision-Making Criteria) Determination 2018.

Digital radio services commenced in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney in July 2009 after the ACCC accepted access undertakings in April 2009. In March 2019 the ACCC accepted access undertakings for Canberra, Darwin and Hobart.

The Mandurah undertaking is substantially similar to those undertakings and for this reason the ACCC intends to conduct an expedited assessment. After considering submissions, the ACCC will consider whether any further consultation is appropriate or whether to proceed to a final decision.

The ACCC is seeking submissions on a range of factors, including:

  • whether the access undertaking complies with Division 4B of Part 3.3 of the Act
  • whether the access undertaking unduly restricts competition in related markets
  • whether the terms and conditions of access specified in the access undertaking are reasonable
  • whether the terms and conditions of access specified in the access undertaking include access prices or pricing methodologies which are fair and reasonable
  • whether the access undertaking includes an obligation on the licensee to not hinder access to services
  • whether the terms and conditions of access specified in the access undertaking provide for a reasonable dispute resolution mechanism.

The consultation and position paper can be found below along with details on how to make a submission.

Submissions and responses are sought by Tuesday, 15 October 2019.

Please email submissions to digitalradio@accc.gov.au.

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