True hit with $3B fine following TOT row - Mobile World Live

True hit with $3B fine following TOT row

06 SEP 2018

Thailand operator True vowed to fight a tribunal’s order to pay THB94 billion ($2.9 billion) for breaching a contract with rival TOT, in a dispute dating back to 2005.

In a statement, True said “the case is not final”, and it will take legal action against the decision within 90 days.

The dispute relates to an arbitration claim made by TOT against True in October 2005, claiming True was in breach of a joint agreement to provide high speed internet (ADSL) services to the company, as well as allow other parties to make use of its system.

True said the damages were calculated on the basis of a lack of revenue from ADSL services between September 2001 and January 2018.

NBTC spat
In a separate claim, True also said it will appeal an order from the country’s regulator, the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), for its subsidiary TrueMove to pay THB3.4 billion.

NBTC made the claim after ruling the company was in breach of its rules covering the use of spectrum in the 1800MHz band.

True’s issues add to a turbulent time for the Thai telecoms market.

Today (6 September), rival operator dtac said it was considering legal action if the regulator doesn’t allow it to continue to use the 850MHz spectrum band. The company is expecting to use the spectrum band after a concession with CAT Telecom expries on 15 September, but NBTC is expected to reject the request.

Speaking to Bloomberg, IV Global Securities analyst Rattana Leenutaphong said “legal cases are hurting confidence in the industry”.

“For True, the company must fight every way it can to defend the case as the money is so big. Court cases tend to drag on for a long time and will add to uncertainty over the stock.

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Kavit Majithia

Kavit joined Mobile World Live in May 2015 as Content Editor. He started his journalism career at the Press Association before joining Euromoney’s graduate scheme in April 2010. Read More >>

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