Thai state-owned operator TOT has demanded THB214.7 billion (US$7 billion) in unpaid fees from the country’s privately-owned operators in what could be the start of a lengthy legal battle. Bloomberg reports that TOT will pursue THB76.4 billion from Advanced Info Service (AIS), THB97 billion from Total Access Communication (DTAC), THB36.4 billion from True Corp. and THB700 million baht from TT&T, according to a statement by the Thai Information and Technology Ministry.
Thai operator TOT could ask for THB75 billion (US$2.25 billion) in compensation from its rival AIS, which paid less than originally agreed for a mobile phone concession, according to a member of a government panel.
Thailand’s largest operator, AIS, has resurrected plans to launch as a 3G MVNO on state-owned TOT’s network following the cancellation of the country’s 3G auctions last week. The move is seen as another victory for TOT, which, along with another state-owned-firm – CAT Telecom – managed to halt the 3G auction process in the courts
Thailand’s telecoms regulator said yesterday that the country’s two largest operators will be allowed to submit bids for 3G licenses despite the fact that ownership structures could be in breach of the auction’s foreign ownership rules.
The board of Thai state-run telco TOT has told the country’s mobile market leader AIS to wait four to six months before beginning the proposed data roaming service on the state enterprise’s 2100MHz 3G network to give its contracted MVNOs some marketing leeway.