Telstra has reportedly dismissed rumours that it has reached an agreement with the Australian government over the terms of access to its fixed line network infrastructure, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. The country’s fixed line incumbent claimed that the rumour was ‘unfounded’, adding that negotiations with the state over use of the network for the National Broadband Network (NBN) project were ongoing. The dismissal was reiterated by the Department of Broadband, Communications & the Digital Economy (DBCDE), with a spokeswoman for communications minister Stephen Conroy reiterating that talks were still taking place; no comment was made on whether an outcome was close.
As reported earlier this month by CommsUpdate, negotiations between Telstra and the state over the former’s role in the NBN project were claimed to have stalled over issues of pricing. It is believed that Telstra is pressing for AUD12 billion (USD11.12 billion) as compensation for losing its copper network and for granting access to other infrastructure elements it owns. NBN Co is aiming to transfer the incumbent’s fixed line customers to its new fibre network, while it also wants access to infrastructure including underground pipes, ducts and space at telephone exchanges, but the private-public company is thought to have said it will pay no more than AUD8 billion.