ZTE drops TOT 3G lawsuit, but Ericsson could stall rollout

20 Apr 2011

Chinese equipment provider ZTE Corporation has withdrawn a lawsuit seeking to nullify a 3G network rollout contract awarded by Thai state-owned telco TOT to the SL consortium led by Thai-based vendors Samart Telcom and Loxley. The Bangkok Post writes that the retraction by ZTE, which had complained the tender had been conducted unfairly, could help clear the path to TOT finalising the national 3G expansion contract with SL, a group which also includes Huawei of China and Finnish-German Nokia Siemens Networks. However, another vendor aggrieved at the auction process, Sweden’s Ericsson, says it is persisting with its case against TOT and has already submitted paperwork to the court in support of its petition. Furthermore, Thailand’s Office of the Auditor General is carrying out its own investigation into the 3G contract bidding process, whilst TOT has also been temporarily prevented from signing any major contracts due to board resignations over other unrelated legal matters. The four SL vendors have agreed to a state request to cut their asking price from THB16.29 billion (USD532 million) to THB15.99 billion.

Thailand, Ericsson, TOT, ZTE