DICT to name third telco by December

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) will abide by President Rodrigo Duterte’s wish to name the third telco by December 2018.

The DICT released the projected timeline for the selection of the new major player (NMP) in the telecommunications industry in a press briefing earlier this month, marking November 7 as the deadline of the submission of the bidding documents.

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), headed by NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba, and the DICT, led by DICT Acting Secretary Eliseo Rio, Jr., conducted the press briefing to explain Memorandum Circular (M.C.) 09-09-2018, and to respond to the concerns of the interested bidders and the media.

In the timeline set by the DICT, the new M.C. on the selection of the third telco took effect on October 6.

An invitation to bid was published on October 7, with the bidding documents available at ₱1 million each the next day

A pre-selection information session and a training in filling up the NMP Selection Documents Form A was held on October 15. According to Cordoba, additional trainings may be held after, if needed.

The new major player will be chosen based on the highest committed level of service (HCLoS) approach. The three main components to be rated are the national population coverage, minimum average broadband speed, and the capital and operational expenditures (Capex/Opex). Only the first two will be audited.

Several issues were raised during the briefing such as the way to break a tie in case two companies end up with the same score and the tightness of the schedule

According to Rio, the timeline was based on the desire of President Duterte. He said that the officials involved will be “dead” if they miss the deadline since they already missed the previous deadline.

Interested bidders can continue submitting their queries on the selection process until October 22 while the deadline for responding to these queries will be on November 2.

Projected Timeline for the Selection of the Third Telco:

As of October 15, 8 companies expressed their intent to operate as the NMP in the telecom industry, by securing bid documents for the third selection process. These are: