The Philippine telecoms regulator, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), confirmed yesterday (31 October) that a tenth firm – AMA Telecommunications Corp – has joined the race to become the country’s New Major Player (NMP). In a text message, the NTC said that AMA Telecommunications, which secured a Congressional franchise in 2016 to construct, install, establish, operate and maintain telecommunications systems in the Philippines, had paid the PHP1 million (USD19,000) fee for selection documents, taking the total number of confirmed participants to date into double figures.
The industry watchdog also noted that Converge ICT is indeed one of the two previously unidentified buyers of bid documents, after Converge ICT president Dennis Anthony Uy visited the NTC in Quezon City ‘to emphasise that it was his firm that made the purchase’. Earlier, Uy had suggested his firm would not take part, preferring instead to focus on boosting its fibre internet business after setting aside USD1.8 billion for a ‘massive network project’. Converge ICT previously revealed it would partner with South Korean telco KT Corp to vie for the slot.
The government still hopes to name the third telco player before Christmas.