Telstra sale abandoned, Senator says

National Party Senate Leader Ron Boswell said today he suspected plans for the full sale of Telstra had been abandoned.

Senator Boswell said it was not feasible for the government to push ahead with plans to privatise the rest of the national carrier before the upcoming federal election.

"I would suspect that the full sale of Telstra will be ruled out," he told ABC Radio.

"I think ... the sale of Telstra is off the agenda; it is too close to an election."

A formal announcement regarding the full sale of Telstra is expected in the next couple of weeks.

The Besley inquiry into telecommunications went to federal cabinet earlier this week as part of a package to identify measures to boost telecommunications investment in regional Australia.

According to an AAP report, Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson said any further sale of the national carrier was dependent on fixing the problems with regional service levels identified in the Besley inquiry.

"My concern and indeed the National Party's concern is pure and simple, we want world-class technology at affordable prices, the best possible technology at the best affordable prices, at the greatest reliability possible for telecommunications, because that is what the bush needs to capture its economic opportunities," he said.

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