Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Paul Budde for President

The battle over Australia's National Broadband Network, including an AUD 4.7bn subsidy, is drawing to a close - and it's not getting any prettier. Telstra wants to bid, but threatens not to, should the government structurally separate the company. The main opponent is the Terria consortium, which has had a few defections recently and seems to have trouble (I wonder why) getting it's financing in order.
Yesterday, at the Broadband World 2008 conference in Sydney, Telstra played hardliner once again by not taking part in a panel, apparently for the simple reason that Paul Budde was there too - and as chairman, mind you. Budde is a firm believer in structural separation, which sort of (does it?) explain Telstra's actions. I have to give credit to Paul, not just for his views, but for taking an Obama-esque stance at the conference. Writes iTnews:
Budde implored delegates not to ignore or ridicule Telstra in the remaining part of the process. "It's not in our interest to ignore Telstra," he said. "Telstra will still be a critical part of telecommunications in Australia. We all need to sit down and address the seriousness of the issues brought about by the NBN and the ways to go forward." Hear hear Budde!

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