MANILA — Filipinos will soon experience improved Internet services after President Rodrigo Duterte, on Monday, formally awarded Mislatel Consortium, the country’s third mobile player, its permit to operate.
Mislatel Consortium–a group led by Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy, is composed of Udenna Corporation, Chelsea Logistics, Infrastructure Holdings Corporation, and China Telecommunications Corporation.
Udenna and Chelsea would control 60 percent of the venture while China Telecommunications will have the remaining 40 percent.
In a ceremony at Malacañan Palace, Duterte handed the permit to operate or certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN) to Uy.
Information and Communications Technology Secretary Gringo Honasan witnessed the handover of the permit to operate.
Duterte, in his speech, described the entry of Mislatel Consortium as a “milestone” in government efforts to provide fast, reliable, secure, and more affordable telecommunication services to the public.
He urged Mislatel Consortium to “break the prevailing duopoly in the telecommunications industry” and fulfill their commitment to provide better telco services to Filipinos.
The President also encouraged Filipinos to take advantage of the opportunities that will arise from a better telecommunications industry.
“Expand your businesses, engage in online jobs, avail of online learning and training opportunities, and participate in productive public discussions,” Duterte said.
“Now that we are moving forward to a greater capacity in information and communications technology, we will have a better opportunity to improve our personal, social, political and economic aspirations,” he added.
The awarding of Mislatel Consortium’s permit to operate comes after it complied with the requirement of PHP10 billion in additional paid-in capital and the submission of a performance bond.
According to a release from Mislatel Consortium, it will first conduct a pilot user program late this year to test the network.
Mislatel Consortium will launch only 4G services and will no longer offer legacy 2G and 3G systems.
Earlier, Mislatel Consortium vowed to offer 55 Mbps of Internet speed that covers 84.01 percent of the population in five years and 27 Mbps in the first year alone.
It intends to spend PHP257 billion in infrastructure and service rollout during the same period and provide 30 percent coverage in the first year alone.
The release also bared that Mislatel Consortium was renamed as Dito Telecommunity Corporation. (PNA)