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Research by Country/Region January 23, 2018  
New Zealand: Broadband Fixed Wireless Access

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A. CURRENT GOVERNMENT POLICY GOVERNING ACCESS TO THE WORLDWIDE FIXED WIRELESS ACCESS BAND (3.4 TO 3.7 GHZ), LMDS (28 TO 31 GHZ), AND UNLICENSED BANDS
    · Government policy is generally very laissez-faire. New Zealand’s goal is to have as few regulatory constraints on radio spectrum allocation.
    · New telecoms regulation is opening the market by mandating carrier interconnection and preventing anticompetitive behavior by the former monopoly.
    · Frequencies in both ranges are auctioned off for 20-year use blocks. The government’s RF spectrum auction website is: http://auction.med.govt.nz/
    · Under the provisions of General User Licenses (unlicensed bands), various uses of radio spectrum are exempt from individual licensing and license fees. These licenses typically apply to radio services such as cordless telephones, garage door openers, remote car door locking, maritime VHF radio and CB radio. In many instances the nature of the technologies employed, conditions of operation, or the short operating ranges involved, limits the potential for interference between different applications sharing the same spectrum. General User Licences (formerly known as General Licences) provide for certain classes of radio transmitter to be used without the need for the owner to obtain a licence in their own name. Further information is available here: http://www.med.govt.nz/rsm/licensing/guls.html
      B. DEMAND OR NEED FOR BROADBAND FIXED WIRELESS (BFW) SERVICES

      · New Zealand spent NZ$405.3 million The New Zealand Dollar was very weak in 2001, trading in the range of NZ$1= US$0.39 to US$0.44. It has since recovered to around NZ$1 = US$0.59 as of June 24, 2003. So at the 2001 exchange rate of US$0.44, NZ spent US$178.3 million on IT, but at the most recent exchange rate, this figure would be more like US$239.1 million. on telecommunications services and equipment in 2001.
      · New Zealand has the highest per-capita spending on information and communication technology (ICT) in the world. Approximately 14% of GDP is spent on information and communications technology.
      · Industry growth has been driven by wireless technology: over 60% of New Zealanders currently use a mobile phone, compared with only 20% in 1998.
      · Although 40% of households have an Internet connection, less than 10% currently have broadband.
      · Numerous large-scale infrastructure upgrades to deliver broadband access and services to homes, offices and mobile devices are ongoing.
      · Fixed-wireless players are creating several strategic partnerships to target harder-to-reach geographical and industrial niches, especially in rural areas where the government offers investors financial incentives to encourage development.
      · New Zealand has one of the fastest growth rates of text-messaging in the world, according to a poll carried out by the international GSM Association in 2001. Vodafone NZ has set a target to have 20% of revenues from data services by 2005; it derived about 11% of its revenues from mobile data applications, including SMS text messaging, in the last financial year. By comparison, Vodafone’s Australian operations derived only 6-8% of its revenues from mobile data applications that year.

      C. LICENSING
        · The main legislative vehicle for managing the radio spectrum in New Zealand is the Radiocommunications Act 1989 and its associated Regulations. New Zealand's regime for managing the radio spectrum was unique at the time of the passing of the Radiocommunications Act in 1989. New Zealand was the first country in the world to introduce a regime of tradable spectrum rights. Radio spectrum rights are used for telecommunication and broadcasting services such as cellular phones, television, sound broadcasting and general telecommunication purposes. They are initially allocated on a competitive basis, typically by auction, and last for periods of up to 20 years. The initial rights were allocated in 1990 and will expire in 2010. Other rights expire at later dates.
        • Operators who require radio spectrum can either purchase the management right to use certain frequencies or purchase a use licence for specific frequencies from the Ministry of Economic Development. Radio spectrum transmissions are subject to the Radiocommunications Act 1989, which provides for the creation and registering of:
          • A tradeable management right over any defined frequency band for a specified period, to a maximum of 20 years
          • A tradeable spectrum licence by the owner of a management right for frequencies within the band covered by the management right;
          • A non-tradeable radio licence by the Ministry of Economic Development where no management right exists.
        • The Ministry of Economic Development maintains a public register of spectrum rights nd radio licences.

        D. FOREIGN OWNERSHIP LIMITS

        · No single foreign entity is permitted to own more than 49.9% of shares of Telecom New Zealand and government permission is required for any single foreign investor wishing to own more than 10% of Telecom NZ. Government's Kiwi (or golden) share provides special voting rights to control the maximum shareholding of any single foreign party and transfers of blocks of shares among parties. (Source: Government of Canada)
        · No restrictions on other operators.

        E. INTERCONNECTION TARIFFS
          · Telecommunications Bill 2001 has introduced a number of regulatory measures intended to further open the market to competitive service providers. It would do so by facilitating inter-carrier agreements on issues such as interconnection, number portability and local-loop unbundling. A key feature of the legislation is the creation of a telecommunications commissioner mandated to settle industry disputes and set specific guidelines where necessary.

          F. OTHER POLICIES AND REGULATIONS GOVERNING BFW
            · EMC and radio product compliance is based on the principle of supplier self-declaration. The supplier of a product must comply with the requirements of the level of conformity allocated to that product.
            · Network operator status is not a prerequisite to providing either telecommunications or broadcasting services; that is, these services can be provided without declaration as a network operator. Thus, a person contemplating entering the telecommunications or broadcasting markets is able to provide its services without network operator status. However, an operator may apply to the Minister for network operator designation under section 103 of the Telecommunications Act if the special rights conferred on network operators, for example access to land, are necessary to enable the applicant to commence or carry on a telecommunications or broadcasting business.

            G. TO WHAT EXTENT ARE BFW SERVICES BEING OFFERED BY DOMESTIC OR INTERNATIONAL FIRMS?

            · Telecom New Zealand, NZ’s largest wireless operator with 1.3 million subscribers, is government owned. Telecom offers 3G broadband wireless services with its Mobile JetStream service, with a maximum speed of 153 Kbps.
            · Vodafone NZ, with 1.1 million subscribers, is foreign-owned. Vodafone offers GPRS and CSD technologies for its broadband wireless services.
            · New Zealand has one of the fastest growth rates of text-messaging in the world, according to a poll carried out by the international GSM Association in 2001. Vodafone NZ has set a target to have 20% of revenues from data services by 2005; it derived about 11% of its revenues from mobile data applications, including SMS text messaging, in the last financial year. By comparison, Vodafone’s Australian operations derived only 6-8% of its revenues from mobile data applications that year.

              H. CURRENT LIST OF BFW ACCESS PROVIDERS
                · NZ is a highly saturated wireless market. As of March 2001, 60% of NZ citizens owned a mobile phone; the number has certainly grown since then.
                · The mobile phone market is divided between:
                o Telecom New Zealand (NZ owned)
                · CDMA operator
                · 1.3 million subscribers, nationwide coverage
                · 2G and 3G licenses renewed/extended via auction in January, 2001. Additional licenses acquired periodically via auction.
                o Vodafone NZ (European owned)
                · GSM operator
                · 1.1 million subscribers, nationwide coverage
                · 2G and 3G licenses renewed/extended via auction in January, 2001. Additional licenses acquired periodically via auction.
                o TelstraClear (Australian owned; majority shareholder is Australian government)
                · Formed via merger of TelstraSaturn and Clear Communications in December 2001
                · Telstra currently uses Vodafone’s wireless network in NZ for wireless broadband via mobile phones, but provides a range of other services
                · 2G and 3G licenses renewed/extended via auction in January, 2001. Additional licenses acquired periodically via auction.
                o South African provider Econet has announced plans to build its own 355 cell-tower GSM network in order to compete with Vodafone and Telecom, beginning in 2004.
                · Other service providers resell access to either TNZ’s or Vodafone’s network.
                · Walker Wireless and Broadcast Communications Ltd. (BCL) are major bandwidth wholesalers.
                · New Zealand’s telecoms equipment industry is dominated by large multinationals.

                I. CERTIFICATION PROCEDURES AND IMPORT DUTIES
                    Regulatory Framework:
                · Previous to Telecom Bill 2001, New Zealand’s telecoms industry was regulated using normal protections against anti-competitive practices rather than a specialized regulatory regime. Since deregulation in 1991, competitors have had difficulty achieving satisfactory agreements with TNZ on issues such as interconnection and number portability.
                · Telecom Bill 2001 addresses issues of market and network accessability by creating two tiers of regulated services:
                o designations specify an obligation to provide a service and the price to be charged. Designations include interconnection with Telecom’s fixed telephone network, number portability, network wholesaling, and fixed to mobile carrier pre-selection from Telecom’s fixed network; and
                o specifications name services that must be provided but do not determine the price to be charged. They include mobile roaming and cell tower colocation.
                        Market Brief: The Telecommunications Market in New Zealand March 2003
                · Telecom Bill 2001 also created the position of a Telecommunications Commissioner as part of the Commerce Commission. The Commissioner will resolve disputes between carriers over access to regulated services and recommend new regulatory designations and specifications as necessary.
                · Another new regulatory element is the extension of Telecom’s KSO with the creation of Telecommunication Service Obligations, which is essentially a scheme to distribute the costs of meeting the KSO—formerly Telecom’s sole burden—among other telecoms service providers. Specific recommendations should be ready by December 2002.
                · Since the implementation of the new bill, interconnection agreements have been struck between the major carriers, as has an agreement regarding number portability for toll-free telephone services.
                · The Ministry of Economic Development is responsible for the administration of equipment standards for telecoms equipment where electrical safety and electromagnetic compatibility are concerned. However, the Ministry does not have a regulatory function: the responsibility for setting the standards for equipment to be attached to telecoms networks lies with the network operators themselves.
                · Telecom New Zealand has established a formal process for setting standards for equipment that may be attached to its public switched telecoms network. Test Results from overseas laboratories that meet New Zealand equipment standards are accepted. Further information can be obtained from the Telecom New Zealand Access Standards Web site at http://www.telepermit.co.nz
                · With very few exceptions, goods imported into New Zealand are subject to the 12.5% goods and services tax (GST). GST is payable on the sum of following amounts:
                o the Customs value of the goods;
                o any import duty, anti-dumping and countervailing duty; and
                o the freight and insurance costs incurred in transporting the goods to New Zealand.

                RESPONSE INFORMATION

                This response was prepared by the U.S. Department of Commerce/Commercial Service in Auckland, New Zealand, in June 2003. For further clarification please contact:

                Lisa Struneski
                Commercial Specialist
                U.S. Commercial Service, Auckland
                Lisa.Struneski@mail.doc.gov

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