Thai VoIP licences to be issued

31 May 2006

Thailand’s National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) is drawing up new licence conditions and interconnection charges as it prepares to issue concessions for the provision of voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) in the country’s consumer market. Telecoms operators and ISPs including CAT Telecom, TOT Corp, True Corp, AIS, DTAC and BUZZ are likely to be licensed over the next twelve months. Three or four VoIP licences are expected to be awarded via CAT Telecom, the state-owned incumbent international gateway operator. The move is designed to combat the country’s unlicensed VoIP industry which costs the established telcos significant revenue losses each year. In January 2006 the NTC decided to allow private firms entry into three key internet services markets — international internet gateway (IIG) services, the internet exchange, and consumer VoIP.