Gov't may allocate frequencies to possible 4th, 5th telcos - regulator

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 27 2019 09:52 AM | Updated as of Mar 27 2019 03:11 PM

The National Telecommunications Commission opens documents for the third telco bidding on Nov. 7, 2018. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA--The government will crack down on the use of radio frequencies, which could be redistributed to possible fourth and fifth telecommunication players, a regulator said Wednesday. 

Sixty-eight percent of the frequency spectrum belongs to Globe and Smart, while the rest went to the designated third telco Mislatel, said Information and Communications Technology Acting Secretary Eliseo Rio. 

Firms that use the spectrum inefficiently, he said, will be ordered to return to the government their frequencies, which may be allocated "to a fourth, even a fifth telco," he said. 

The government, he said, also eyes building thousands of common telco towers, which would reduce the required capital and lure new investors. 

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The DICT is also waiting for the ratified Congress resolution on the franchise of Mislatel before issuing a certificate, Rio said. 

"The earliest na makuha namin ito is when they (lawmakers) come back after the election, mga May," he said. 

(The earliest we could get this is when they come back after the election, around May.) 

Mislatel, backed by Chelsea, Udenna Corp and China Telecom, secured rights in November to challenge the dominance of PLDT Inc and Globe Telecom.
 
The Senate in February approved the change in ownership of Mislatel, paving the way for it to operate.