MANILA -- Barring court action, the government may name a "provisional" third telco to challenge PLDT Inc and Globe Telecom by Nov. 7, a Cabinet official overseeing the search told Senators Monday.
Using the highest committed level of service as criteria, a computer will aid the selection of the new player. This will require no judgment or discretion from anybody, Department of Information and Communications Technology officer-in-charge Eliseo Rio said.
Eight companies, 3 of them foreign, have bought documents that will allow them to bid for the slot. One of the 3 is bigger than Globe and Smart Communications, PLDT's mobile unit, Rio told a Senate hearing.
"By Nov. 7 we will have a provisional third telco barring any decision from the court," Rio said.
One of the bidders, NOW Corp, questioned the selection process in court, saying it had turned into a money-making scheme.
"Securities and fees are not money-making scheme but were inserted to ensure that we will be able to attract participant while ensuring that the winner will be able to withstand intensive competition against the incumbent telco," Rio said.
Under the highest committed level of service scheme, bidders will be asked to select the names of the barangays where they plan to provide coverage for the next 5 years, Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba of the National Telecommunications Commission said.
Their "percentage of commitment" per year based on the data will be computed, he said.