Malaysia’s state-run wholesale provider Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB) denied a media report it failed to be transparent in awarding contracts to vendors, rejecting claims of impropriety in its governance and procurement practices.

The company issued a statement on 20 April to address “several misleading claims” made by Channel News Asia, which last week alleged DNB had not been transparent in its internal operations. The news outlet pointed to contracts for a 5G network from Ericsson, as well as software procurement and a cloud services platform.

DNB highlighted talks about share subscription agreements with five mobile operators. It insisted its tender and procurement processes are structured according to “the strictest governance standards and best practices”, and it had always been open and transparent when awarding tenders and contracts.

It explained Ericsson had the highest score across all prerequisites for the 5G contract and the tender process was structured by an independent global professional services company.

Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said the issue of transparency and an agreement over the wholesale 5G network would be discussed with mobile operators next week, The Star reported.

A second nationwide wholesale network is due to be launched this year.