I’ll buy that for (under) a dollar: MNP fee slashed, porting capacity multiplied

23 May 2013

The telecom committee of Thailand’s National Broadcasting & Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) has approved a reduction in the fee for mobile number portability (MNP) to THB29 (USD0.97) per transaction, down from the current THB99, with the change to take effect on 30 June. Simultaneously, the committee ordered number porting capacity to be raised from 40,000 numbers per day to 300,000 numbers per day, with the upgraded capacity to be implemented within a month’s time by Clearinghouse Co, the joint venture formed by all the Thai mobile operators to manage the number transfer system. Market leader Advanced Info Service (AIS) has so far migrated around a million of its users to its 3G subsidiary Advanced Wireless Network (AWN), which holds its 2100MHz licence, via a call transit system instead of using MNP. Thai newspaper The Nation reports that the NBTC is examining whether this method complies with regulations, quoting Korkij Danchaivichit, the commission’s deputy secretary-general. Sutichai Chuenchoosil, senior vice president for business relations and development of AIS, said the firm had informed the NBTC that it had to use the call transit method in response to overwhelming demand of customers who want to move to the third-generation network, while waiting for MNP capacity to be expanded.