TNZ committed to AAPT despite writedown

Telecom New Zealand (TNZ) says it remains committed to its Australian business following an $NZ850 million ($722 million) write-down on its Australian unit AAPT.

The company said there are no plans to cut any of AAPT's 2000 staff due to the write-down.

TNZ reported its first-ever annual net loss of $NZ188 million for the year ended June 30 2002.

The company also carried an additional charge of $NZ8 million after tax from the close down of its CDMA rollout in AustraliaTelecom NZ chairman Roderick Deane said the adjustment reflects the current expectation of the future cash flows of AAPT within a "changed" telecommunications environment.

"Many telcos have had to adjust values in the last couple of years. This is a moderate step compared to most. Asset revaluations of this nature are a business reality for telcos around the world today."

Deane said AAPT will remain "integral" to its trans-Tasman business strategy.

"The board and management remain committed to our future in Australia.

Telecom NZ's net cashflows from operating activities were $NZ1.351 billion, compared with $NZ1.758 billion last year. Excluding unusual items such as the AAPT writedown, the company bettered private sector forecasts with a pre-abnormal net profit of $NZ670 million, up 9.1 per cent.

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