Regulatory or policy changes may directly impact our strategy and business model as well as increase complexity and cost of doing business.

We proactively develop and maintain relationships with relevant regulatory stakeholders and policy makers, community groups and industry in an effort to minimise potential adverse effects of policy and regulatory decisions.

Progress in FY17

We engaged on potential reform affecting our business

  • The future of the Universal Service Obligation (USO) – the Australian Government’s policy guaranteeing that no matter where someone lives, they can have access to a standard telephone service – is an important issue for many customers, especially those living in rural and regional areas. The Government’s nbn™ policy is to build a high-speed fixed broadband network using a mix of technologies to 100 per cent of the population, which could in time become the delivery mechanism for USO services. Telstra is open to changes to the USO, but only if customers are not disadvantaged by those changes. We will continue to advocate for rural and regional customers to ensure they have confidence in the availability of a reliable voice service.
  • The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced in 2016 that it would investigate whether to regulate roaming – which would have forced us to give competitors access to Telstra’s entire Australian mobile network. In its draft decision on 5 May 2017, the ACCC proposed to not declare a wholesale domestic mobile roaming service.

We responded to new legislation

  • On 13 February 2017, the Federal Parliament passed an amendment to the Privacy Act to introduce a mandatory data breach notification scheme. The regime will come into force in February 2018 and will require notification to the OAIC and impacted individuals in the event of a data breach that is likely to cause serious harm to impacted individuals.
  • This year we responded to the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 (MSA), which requires companies operating in the UK with annual global turnover exceeding £36 million to publish an annual ‘slavery and human trafficking statement’. Our Modern Slavery Statement 2016 is available on our website and we will continue to publish our Statement annually as well as provide updates on our progress in our annual Sustainability Report.