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Thai court to hear petition against 3G licence auction

11 октября 2012

A Thai court said it would hear a petition that says the country's coming auction of third generation mobile phone licenses is unconstitutional and not in the public interest.

Telecommunications activist Anupap Tiralap said Wednesday he is requesting an injunction against the auction proceedings until the country's telecom regulator takes measures to ensure fair competition and quality cellular services for consumers.

Analysts say the court probably won't accept the case at Thursday's hearing as Mr. Anupap isn't a directly affected counter-party. "We believe that Mr. Anupap's petition is just noise and the auction will go ahead as planned on Oct. 16," said Prasit Sujiravorakul, a telecom analyst at Bualuang Securities.

In 2010, a Thai court issued an injunction against the planned auction of 3G mobile licenses to private operators after state-owned firms filed petitions challenging the authority of the then regulator to allocate licenses.

Thailand's three largest mobile phone operators, Advanced Info Service PCL, Total Access Communication PCL, and True Move, a unit of True Corp PCL, plan to take part in the coming auction via their wholly owned subsidiaries.

The auction is an important step toward the liberalization of the Thai telecommunications industry, and will give the winners direct access to 3G frequencies for the first time, eliminating the need to pay high concession fees to state firms to use their networks.

Thailand's private mobile phone operators currently operate their businesses under concessions granted by TOT PCL, formerly the Telephone Organization of Thailand, and CAT Telecom PCL, formerly Communications Authority of Thailand, and are required to share top-line revenues with the state-owned firms.

Источник: Total Telecom

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