Thursday, March 31, 2011

Thailand - There is deadlock between parties over compensation about spectrum

[bangkok post] Preliminary negotiations on compensations for concession amendments between private mobile operators and the state telecom enterprises have ended in deadlock with key facts still in dispute.

There has been no clear indication that private telecom companies were responsible for causing damage to TOT Plc and CAT Telecom in terms of lost revenue, said Wichian Mektrakarn, the chief executive officer of Advanced Info Service.

"Following a few negotiation meetings with the state representatives, we have not been given any clear explanation of how the concession changes in past had caused damage in revenue losses to the two state telecom enterprises," he said.

"They also gave us no precise damage costs resulting from the concession amendments."

Digital Phone Co, the 1800-MHz mobile unit of AIS, has been asked to submit compensation proposals to a committee tomorrow. AIS is required to submit all of its details on April 1.

Last Tuesday, the investigative committee chaired by Jeerawan Boonperm, the ICT ministry's permanent secretary, asked CAT's president to identify compensation figures related to concession amendments of DTAC and TrueMove.

CAT is demanding 22.44 billion baht from DTAC for revenue losses and 8.2 billion baht from TrueMove.

But the talks failed to reach an agreement on the compensation figures.

All three major mobile operators _ AIS, DTAC and TrueMove _ have insisted that they will not compensate state telecom enterprises for damages claimed as a result of concession amendments, as they fear a legal domino effect that could trigger more demands.

However, the operators said they were willing to negotiate under new terms, with a possible focus on compensation for revenue losses from changes to concessions after the original pacts expired.

The original contract of AIS with TOT expired on Sept 30, 2010, while DTAC's original concession with CAT Telecom ended in September 2006. Both received extensions in 1996: AIS to 2015 and DTAC to 2018.

Concession compensation talks at impasse

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