Timor Telecom ready to interconnect with Viettel, but cites obstacles with ‘dominant’ Telin

11 Feb 2013

Timor Telecom, part of the Portugal Telecom group, has revealed that is ‘ready’ to sign interconnection with Vietnamese-backed newcomer Viettel, but says there are problems with reaching agreement with the other new entrant to the Timor-Leste market, PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (Telin), a subsidiary of Indonesian state-owned telco PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom), which reportedly launched mobile services in Timor-Leste last month under the brand name Telkomcel. In an article on Portuguese site DinheiroDigital, Timor Telecom claims that although it is in the final stages of negotiations with Telin, the Indonesian firm has a competitive advantage over the Timor-Leste incumbent because of its international internet bandwidth resources including ‘a dominant position in relation to terrestrial connection.’ ‘We want equal footing in terms of bandwidth; we need fair prices and [access to] a land connection,’ Timor Telecom’s managing director, Manuel Amaro, told a press conference. ‘We want capacity and prices of a land connection that Telin [does] not want to give, because it says it has no capacity, but is putting a lot of bandwidth in East Timor,’ he added.

The Timor-Leste government awarded two mobile spectrum licences to Viettel and Telin in July 2012, allowing the winners to provide any fixed or mobile telecommunications service, including local, long-distance and international telephony, as well as broadband internet access.

Timor-Leste, Telin Timor-Leste (Telkomcel), Timor Telecom, Viettel Group