Australia: ACCC knocked down by Federal Court ruling

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission was dealt a blow this week after the nation’s Federal Court upheld an appeal by telco Telstra, which had fought the ACCC’s intervention in Telstra’s commercial arrangements.

In his judgment, Justice John Middleton found that the competition authority “has no power to hear and determine the matters notified to the commission” by three Telstra rivals.

Those rivals – Vocus Fibre, Adam Internet and Chime Communications – had each filed separate complaints with the ACCC after Telstra increased costs for the companies to access its infrastructure in 2012.

But Telstra then sued the ACCC, arguing that the body does not have the power to intervene in such matters. This week’s decision upheld Telstra’s argument.

An earlier ruling in March rejected Telstra’s case.

Full content: Sydney Morning Herald

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