Hamish Fletcher

Business reporter for the NZ Herald

NZX issues Chorus clarification

John Key has warned against a cut in copper-based broadband price.  Photo / Mark Mitchell
John Key has warned against a cut in copper-based broadband price. Photo / Mark Mitchell

A group lobbying against Government intervention in the copper internet market has misrepresented the NZX's position, says the stock exchange operator.

Last month Prime Minister John Key warned the listed lines company Chorus, which is handling about 70 per cent of the roll-out of the Government's ultra-fast broadband network, "could go broke" if a Commerce Commission recommendation for a $12.50 per customer cut in the wholesale price of copper-based broadband services were adopted.

Lobby group Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing, which wants the Commerce Commission's ruling to be adopted, wrote to the NZX and ASX stock exchanges asking if Chorus had told them of any risk it could go bust.

"We're pleased with the ASX and NZX conclusions because they confirm that there is absolutely no risk of insolvency under any of the copper pricing scenarios put forward by the Commerce Commission as the independent regulator," coalition spokeswoman Sue Chetwin said.

However, the NZX yesterday issued a note to "clarify inaccurate statements" that the stock exchange had commented on lines company Chorus' financial position.

"NZX does not comment on individual issuers or their financial positions," the stock exchange operator said.

"Chorus has confirmed to NZX that it is in compliance with its continuous disclosure obligations. In this instance, due to the misleading statements made, NZX would like to clarify that based on the information available to NZX, NZX has no reason to challenge Chorus's view that it remains in compliance with its continuous disclosure obligations under the NZSX Listing Rules," the NZX said.

Key told reporters in Brunei on Thursday that he stood by his comments on Chorus.

The company's share price closed at $2.65 yesterday, up 1.15 per cent.

- NZ Herald

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