COMMENTS ON NATIONAL PORTS AUTHORITY BILL
Transtel Government Relations and Regulatory Affairs Department
27 February 2003

Introduction

Transtel thanks the Portfolio Committee on Transport for the opportunity to make comments on the National Ports Authority Bill [B5 2003].

The comments set out in the submission below are preliminary comments on this important piece of legislation. Transtel would welcome the opportunity to make an oral representation to the committee.

Specific Comments

Definitions

1. "Port infrastructure" means the basic structure of a port, including

breakwaters, seawalls, channels, basins, quay walls, jetties, roads, railways, and infrastructure used for the provision of water, lights, power, sewerage and telecommunications and similar services

Transtel query:

With respect to "port infrastructure" is it the intention of this honourable committee that the telecommunications infrastructure that Transtel installed at the ports for provision of telecommunications services to support port operations will be transferred ito ownership to the Authority?

2. "Terminal infrastructure" means terminal buildings, workshops,

substations, surfacing, rail sidings and terminal

services and water, lights, power, sewerage,

telecommunications and similar services within terminal boundaries

Transtel query:

With respect to "terminal infrastructure" is it the intention of this honourable committee that the telecommunications infrastructure that Transtel installed at the ports for provision of telecommunications services to support port operations will be transferred ito ownership to the Authority?

Functions of Authority

Clause 11(1)(e) "arrange for services such as water, light, power,

sewerage and telecommunications"

Transtel query:

We respectfully request that the honourable committee provide us with an understanding of what the term "arrange" telecommunications means in the context mentioned in paragraph (e)?

General Comments

If it is the intention of the Honourable Committee that the National Ports Authority be able to self-provide its own telecommunications infrastructure, we respectfully suggest that the committee remove all reference to "telecommunications" from the Bill.

The reason being that the National Ports Authority, in terms of the Telecommunications Act, as amended, would not be permitted to self-provide its own telecommunications infrastructure.

In terms of section 41 of the Telecommunications Act, the National Ports Authority would have to lease its infrastructure requirements from a fixed line operator, such as the Second National Operator or Telkom S.A. Limited.

Consequently, although the Bill may make provision for the National Ports Authority to "have its own" telecommunications infrastructure, the Telecommunications Act does not.

To the extent the National Ports Authority owns the infrastructure due to the it buying the infrastructure and Transtel installing, operating and maintaining it, details of the assets/infrastructures ownership would have to be worked out between the National Ports Authority and Transtel.
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