Bills Digest 91 1995-96 Telecommunications (Carrier Licence Fees) Amendment Bill 1996


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WARNING:
This Digest is prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments.

This Digest was available from 28 May 1996

CONTENTS

Passage History

Date introduced: 22 May 1996
House: House of Representatives
Portfolio: Communications & the Arts
Commencement: On the day on which the Act receives the Royal Assent.

Purpose

The purpose of the Bill is to enable the Government to honour an election commitment to fund, on a user pays basis, the Commonwealth's contributions to the International Telecommunications Union.

Background

'The ITU is a specialized United Nations (UN) agency responsible for harmonizing and coordinating the use of telecommunications among nations. It is the only agency universally charged with this task; all other international organizations are complementary to it'1.

The Australian Government is committed to make contributions to the ITU to ensure that Australia meets its obligations at this international forum. This Bill enables the Commonwealth to pass the cost of ITU participation on to telecommunications carriers.

Main Provisions

The repeal of Paragraph 6(b) means that the contribution the Commonwealth makes to the ITU will now be recovered from telecommunications carriers. The Bill ensures that the carriers pay their due amounts by 1 July of each year.

Remarks

This amendment is a straightforward fulfillment of an election commitment which transfers the cost of Australia's international connectivity to the carriers who, in turn, benefit from access to international markets and expertise.

Effectively the Amendment increases the costs to carriers by approximately $0.9 million. This amount is spread over the carriers on a cost per timed traffic ratio with a proportional sharing of the costs.

Endnotes

(1) Akwule, Raymond (1992), Global Communications: The Technology, Administration, and Policies,
p 43.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Liz Williams Ph. 06 277 2477
27 May 1996
Bills Digest Service
Parliamentary Research Service

This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine whether the Bill has been enacted and, if so, whether the subsequent Act reflects further amendments.

PRS staff are available to discuss the paper's contents with Senators and Members and their staff but not with members of the public.

ISSN 1323-9032
© Commonwealth of Australia 1996

Except to the extent of the uses permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without the prior written consent of the Parliamentary Library, other than by Members of the Australian Parliament in the course of their official duties.

Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 1996.

This page was prepared by the Parliamentary Library, Commonwealth of Australia
Last updated: 27 May 1996

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