Jeffrey Robertson, "Foreign ownership in telecommunications", Research Note, Parliament of Australia, 7 Mar 2005


Telecommunications is a strategic sector that is vital for the maintenance of sovereign control of the economy. Telecommunications remains a fundamental component of all economic activity. However, foreign ownership may make it more difficult for governments to influence pricing and investment in infrastructure and technology, which can facilitate the achievement of national economic and development goals without recourse to excessive regulation.

Similarly, it can be argued that telecommunications is vital to national security. The central fear is that in periods of uncertainty, telecommunications services, given their centrality to economic activity, could be withdrawn or held as a bargaining chip to resolve disputes. This factor was studied closely in 2001 when the Singaporean Government controlled carrier Singtel acquired Optus, which operates satellites used by Australian defence and security agencies.

Telecommunications foreign ownership.pdf