NCC hearing sees some agreement on need for operators to fulfil commitments pre-merger

14 Apr 2015

A number of Taiwan’s 4G operators have expressed their view that the National Communications Commission (NCC) should not allow carriers to merge without fulfilling commitments made in their business plans, at a hearing held by the regulator to examine merger-related matters.

As previously reported by CommsUpdate, earlier this month it was revealed that the NCC would conduct an administrative hearing with a view to tackling issues raised by the controversial planned merger of Asia Pacific Telecom (APT) and Ambit Microsystems, as well as the former’s roaming agreement with the Taiwan Mobile. Specifically, it was claimed that the Commission would seek to determine if operators should offer more base stations, wider service coverage, faster transmission speeds, increased capacity and more efficient use of frequencies than the commitments listed in their original business plans before a merger is allowed to proceed. Meanwhile, the other matter tabled for discussion was linked to issues that a carrier encounters if it employs a different core network system from the one listed in its business plan after it is granted a concession.

Now, according to the Taipei Times, at the hearing itself certain operators have stressed their belief that not only should companies be required to fulfil commitments before mergers, but that they should be considered to have violated regulations if they change their core systems without informing the NCC. Taiwan Star’s law affairs department vice president Leo Fang was said to have highlighted the fact that it the regulator had denied the renewal of WiMAX provider Tatung Infocomm’s concession for failing to deliver what it had put forward in its business plan, arguing 4G operators should be held to the same standards. Commenting on the matter, the executive was cited as saying: ‘The commission needs to fine the carrier and order it to address the situation within a designated period of time, or it should be stopped from continuing the illegal business.’