Duterte warns 'I'll take over,' if no progress on third telco by November

12 Sep 2018

President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines has vowed to name the country’s new third telco before Christmas and warned that if there are no developments by early November, he will take over to fast track the selection of the company that will compete with incumbents PLDT Inc. and Globe Telecom. With the finalised version of the terms of reference (TOR) for the selection process yet to be published, and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) now saying it expects to name the new telco player ‘within the year,’ after missing its initial target of making an announcement before Duterte’s State of the Nation Address in July 2018, the sometime unconventional president warned that if no developments take place, he will invite interested parties to submit their position papers to him, and he will make his choice in ‘about 30 minutes’. Duterte has also promised to select the bidder with the best track record to provide more options and better service to consumers. ‘I will choose the best [company] and one with the best track record in the business,’ he claimed. Previously, Duterte had confidently predicted that the new entrant would be up and running by the first quarter of 2018.