New Zealand telcos believe CFH is holding up country's broadband plan

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A number of New Zealand's major service providers collectively think that Crown Fibre Holdings (CFH), the group overseeing the government's Ultra-Fast Broadband effort, should be "sidelined or scrapped."

David Stone, TCF

Stone

David Stone, the CEO of the Telecommunications Carriers Forum (TCF), which represents a number of the country's service providers including Telecom New Zealand (NYSE: NZT), intimated in a letter to communications minister Amy Adams that CFH is holding up the process to get agreements in place before they roll out services to customers.

Some of the initial contractors include Chorus, the former wholesale arm of Telecom New Zealand, and a number of local utilities which will build out the network. In addition, Chorus has named Ericsson (Nasdaq: ERIC) as one of its fiber network (conduit and cable) infrastructure suppliers.

In a letter obtained by the Dominion Post, Stone said that "with a few minor exceptions, Crown Fibre's interventions have not been helpful and have delayed commercial arrangement" and that the company's "remaining minor roles could easily be managed by an existing government department."

Stone added that since CFH already awarded construction contracts for the UFB network, they should not be able to act as a "quasi-regulator" or be involved in finalizing network equipment contracts.

Adams said in response to the letter that she had met with a number of the country's telecom representatives and that "Officials are looking into this matter for me."

For more:
- TeleGeography has this article

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