Telstra responds to Estens inquiry

Telstra has released its response to the Estens Inquiry which outlines the telcos commitment to implementing the 19 recommendations relating to Telstra services.

The Commonwealth Government has welcomed the response with minister for communications and IT, Senator Richard Alston, describing it as a “significant further step in improving telecommunications services in regional and remote Australia”.

“Telstra's response finalises the implementation of two of the Inquiry's recommendations on reducing phone connection times and improving the co-ordination of new phone connections,” he said.

Upgraded telephone services for 1400 customers living in remote areas will be completed by September 2004 at a cost of $19.1 million, the carrier said.

Telstra will also to report on the outcome of its project to improve the co-ordination of new fixed phone connections.

Additionally, it has committed to replacing the remaining older radio concentrator systems across its network with more advanced technologies. Group managing director of Telstra Country Wide, Doug Campbell, said the telco had begun work in response to many of the other recommendations.

“Our response will deliver real and practical improvements across the range of communications that customers want and need, from standard telephone services to high-speed Internet access,” he said.

Telstra said it will maintain its local presence in rural and regional Australia through the Telstra Country Wide network of 35 regional management areas.

For more on this story, see next week's issue of ARN.

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