Telstra given 30 per cent discount on $26.5m penalty

Telstra have been fined $26.5 million by a Federal Court judge for mistakenly locking broadband competitors out of Telstra exchanges.

The fine results from Telstra denying its retail competitors access to Telstra exchanges, inhibiting their ability to compete for retail customers.

Telstra is not appealing the decision and has accepted full responsibility, in light of this the Federal Court judge provided a 30 per cent discount, allowing Telstra to only have to pay $18.5m.

Whilst Telstra's competitors are happy that justice is served, they are firm in the view that until Telstra is split up between the wholesale and retail divisions, there will not be a level playing field for effective competition.

Tim Wolfenden, CEO of Make It Cheaper comments: "This is a pretty hefty fine, but goes nowhere towards creating a well regulated competitive telecoms market.

Whilst justice has clearly been served, the question will remain as to how disadvantaged business and residential customers have become by Telstra's actions.

The regulator needs to ensure that these types of practices no longer happen and will never happen again."