Thai quadruple-play operator True Corp has proposed that state-owned telcos TOT and CAT Telecom sell their network assets to its True Telecommunications Growth Infrastructure Fund (TRUGIF), according to a CAT executive quoted by The Nation. True also wants the inclusion of 9,000 telecom towers which were rolled out under its 2G build-transfer-operate (BTO) agreement with CAT and are currently under arbitration proceedings between the two parties, the report noted.
Meanwhile, the chairman of the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI), Somkiat Tangkitvanich, disclosed to the Bangkok Post that the TDRI recommends the government reduce its ownership of both TOT and CAT from 100% to 51%. Somkiat added that the advantages of this move would include alleviating political interference in the operators’ projects whilst giving private sector operators a chance to invest in the companies to assist in their development.
Last week Thailand’s cabinet of ministers approved a state enterprise restructuring plan put forward by the State Enterprise Policy Commission – also known as the ‘super-board’ – which says the two state telcos should merge and combine redundant business units, TelecomAsia reported. The plan also orders the two to cut costs ‘immediately’ by 10%.