A PYMNTS Company

Australian Regulator To Review TPG–Telstra Deal Appeal

 |  January 16, 2023

The Australian Competition Tribunal (ACT) has agreed to review the appeal submitted by TPG and Telstra at the end of 2022, following the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s decision to disallow the pair’s regional network-sharing deal.

The appeal centres on two alleged regulatory oversights. The operators are disputing the ACCC’s decision on the basis that it has incorrectly concluded that the deal would “substantially lessen competition” in the market; and that the agreement’s perceived benefits would be outweighed by its detriment to the public. In conjunction with the two-point critique, the operators asked the ACT to overlook the ACCC’s decision either conditionally or unconditionally.

Read more: Australia Watchdog Rules Against Telstra & TPG Over Mobile Sharing Network

The ACT now has 90 days to make a decision on the case, with extensions available if new information or complexities arise.

When the deal was blocked in December, ACCC Commissioner Liza Carver asserted that, despite its potential to “lead to some short‑term benefits, from an improvement in TPG’s network coverage and some cost savings and efficiencies for TPG and Telstra”, it would ultimately threaten infrastructure-based competition and outweigh the short-term gain over a sustained period.