Regulator tightens regulation on mobile interconnection for smaller players

1 Jul 2015

Under new significant market player (SMP) determinations by Thailand’s National Broadcasting & Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), all five of the country’s mobile network operators (MNOs) – AIS, DTAC, True, TOT and CAT – are classified as SMPs in the wholesale cellular network call termination segment, The Nation reports. Under previous market definitions, only the two largest cellular operators AIS and DTAC were classified as SMPs in the mobile market as a whole – with the retail and wholesale segments undefined – based on a 25% market share threshold. The ‘retail SMP’ designation on the two leading cellcos has now been scrapped, taking into account all market competition factors, such as the extensive nationwide network coverage of True. At end-March 2015 AIS had close to 45% retail market share, DTAC over 30% and True 23%, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database.

The telecom committee of the NBTC has approved new SMP definitions for five telecom service categories in total, divided into wholesale and retail segments, with operators classified as SMPs subject to stricter rules and price caps. As the fixed broadband market leader, True is the sole operator classified as an SMP in the retail fixed broadband access market (as it was under previous definitions), whilst True, TOT, CAT, and Triple T Broadband (3BB) are all classified as SMPs in the wholesale fixed broadband segment.