Thai cellco True Move and state-run CAT Telecom this morning signed a deal to convert the CDMA network formerly operated by Hutchison CAT Wireless Multimedia (Hutch) into a W-CDMA/HSPA-based 3G service, according to the Bangkok Post. Under the deal, True Move, which recently agreed to buy Hong Kong’s Hutchison out of the public-private CDMA joint venture, will install HSPA equipment at 1,400 CDMA2000 base station sites in 25 central provinces including metropolitan Bangkok and then allow CAT Telecom to buy or lease the network. Furthermore, CAT has also reportedly agreed to lease additional HSPA equipment from True Move that will be installed at 1,600 CDMA base station sites across Thailand’s 51 provinces (which currently provide 1xEV-DO-based services under CAT’s wholly owned CAT CDMA brand). The network will be open for rent or purchase to rival cellcos including mobile virtual network operators. According to the report, True and CAT want to launch HSPA services over the combined 3,000-site national network by the end of this year.