Monday, March 30, 2020

Telco giants make payments for 5G spectrum licences

Feb 21. 2020
AIS chief executive officer Somchai Lertsutiwong, third right.
AIS chief executive officer Somchai Lertsutiwong, third right.
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By THE NATION

Advanced Info Service (AIS) and Total Access Communication (dtac) on Friday (February 21) made payments for the licences they acquired in the auction last Sunday.

AIS paid the first instalment of Bt2.093 billion (including Value-added Tax) of the 2600MHz licences out of the total upfront of Bt20.930 billion (including VAT) to the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) on Friday morning.

It also handed over a guarantee amount of Bt18.837 billion for the remaining upfront value of the licences to the watchdog.

According to AIS' filing to the Stock Exchange of Thailand on February 19, its preliminary investment budget for providing 5G service in key areas is approximately Bt10-15 billion within the next 12 months. 

AIS subsidiary Advanced Wireless Network (AWN) clinced one licence of 700MHz, 10 licences of 2600MHz and 12 licences of 26GHz from the auction.

The payment for 2600MHz is divided into seven instalments. The first instalment equals 10 per cent of the total value, and 15 per cent each from the second to seventh instalment (the fifth year to the tenth year).

The licence holders are required to install the 2600MHz network to finish covering 50 per cent of the Eastern Economic Corridor within one year.

In addition, they will have to cover at least 50 per cent of the population of key city areas within four years from the date of the awarding of the licence to drive infrastructure development for a smart city. 

DTAC TriNet obtained two licences of 26GHz from the auction. On Friday it made a one-off payment of Bt974.128 billion (including VAT) for the licences.

DTAC chief executive officer Sharad Mehrotra, fourth right, hands over a cheque of Bt974,128,001.07 to NBTC secretary-general Takorn Tantasith for two licences of the 26GHz spectrum band acquired in the recent multi-band auction.

The winning bidders of this licence are obliged to pay the one-time upfront amount within 90 days after being informed officially as the winner.

The NBTC on Friday will also award the 2600MHz licences to AWN, while DTAC TriNet is expected to pick up the licences early next week.

The other winning bidders are CAT Telecom, True Corp, and TOT.

CAT clinched two 700MHz licences, while True grabbed nine licences of 2600MHz and eight licences of 26GHz. TOT obtained four licences of 26GHz.

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