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TELECOM CORPORATION OF NEW ZEALAND WELCOMES "LANDMARK CASE" DECISION BY HIGH COURT ON LOCAL ACCESS CASE

 WELLINGTON, New Zealand, Dec. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Telecom Corporation of New Zealand said today that it welcomed the New Zealand High Court's "landmark case" finding that the local access charge proposed by its expert advisers was fair and reasonable for its major competitor, Clear; and "more likely than the alternatives to improve efficient competition in telecommunications" and that the Kiwi Share was a shared obligation.
 The Kiwi Share, which is registered in the name of New Zealand's Minister of Finance, has limited the degree of "rebalancing" that can be achieved in the company's pricing.
 Telecom Managing Director Dr. Roderick Deane said: "We look forward to negotiating local access service interconnection with Clear on the basis of these findings. We consider the pricing principles to be the central issue of the landmark case.
 "We are disappointed at the court's findings of a breach of Section 36 of the Commerce Act, but we note that this occurred in the context of a situation where Clear would not accept an access levy. The court has now found that such a levy can appropriately be charged, and Telecom stands ready to negotiate on this issue."
 Dr. Deane also noted that the court had suggested the issue of damages be dealt with during the interconnection negotiations, and that no costs had been awarded to either party. "This confirms that the appropriate way to progress matters from now on is by way of commercial negotiation. Telecom agrees with this approach," Dr. Deane said.
 -0- 12/22/92
 /CONTACT: John DeGroat of Robert Amen & Associates, 203-629-2244, for Telecom/


CO: Telecom Corporation of New Zealand ST: IN: TLS SU:

WB-SM -- NY051 -- 9273 12/22/92 16:29 EST
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Date:Dec 22, 1992
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