Singapore/Hong Kong/Australia, 15 September 2004 - Global carriers operating in Asia Pacific have formed a telecommunications carriers group focused on promoting open market policies and best practice regulatory frameworks throughout Asia Pacific for the benefit of consumers.
The group, Asia Pacific Carriers Coalition (APCC), aims to work with Governments, National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) and consumers throughout Asia Pacific as they develop policies and regulatory frameworks to support further competition and encourage new investment in the telecommunications market.
A competitive dynamic in telecommunications markets is required to increase service quality, drive innovation and lower prices for consumers. The APCC includes carriers such as AT&T, BT, Cable & Wireless, T-Systems (a division of Deutsche Telekom), Macquarie Corporate, MCI, Pacific Internet, and StarHub, which are able to bring international experience and regional expertise to Asia Pacific telecommunications markets.
“Incumbent carriers in Asia typically remain dominant in their markets, with ubiquitous networks deployed over many years as the monopoly provider of all communication services. Relatively recent liberalisation in the main has not yet resulted in markets which are competitive, and in access to bottleneck facilities which is unrestricted or reasonably priced,” said Joe Welch, sitting President of the APCC.
“Open entry” and “best practice” regulatory frameworks are required if these countries are to successfully move from a market dominated by an incumbent (often characterized by stagnant service quality and pricing and by lack of innovation) to a fully competitive market yielding choice, lower prices and dynamic improvements in quality and innovation”, he added.
Focus Countries and Issues
The APCC will focus on key developing markets in the region, including China and India, as well as more mature telecommunications markets such as Singapore and Japan.
The APCC has formed Working Groups for each specific issue that it considers most important for Governments and Regulators in Asia to consider. The Working Groups will focus on issues relating to the pricing of local leased circuits, rates charged for the termination of mobile calls, DSL availability, and the opportunity for new entrants to participate as operators, particularly in developing countries such as India and China.
The APCC members meet monthly, alternating meeting locations between Singapore and Hong Kong with many dialling-in from Japan, Washington DC, London, Sydney and Melbourne. Periodically, the APCC members submit joint comments to formal proceedings opened by the Regulators in the region. In addition, as a group and individually APCC members meet with leading policy makers and Ministry officials in Asia.
The APCC works in co-ordination with other regional and global organizations that share our goal of promoting marketing opening and effective regulation in the communications sector such as the U.S.-based association of competitive telecommunications providers; and the International Telecommunications Users Group (INTUG), comprised of the largest users of telecom services, including many multi-national corporations.
The APCC is a non-profit entity, registered as a society in Singapore. Coudert Brothers LLP, the international law firm, serves as the coalition’s Convenor.
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