The Philippines’ dominant mobile network operators (MNOs), PLDT-owned Smart Communications and Globe Telecom, have teamed up with the country’s new third telco DITO Telecommunity to establish a new company to handle number porting requests, in a move seen locally as ‘an important first step towards the full implementation of Republic Act 11202, also known as the Mobile Number Portability (MNP) Act.’
In a joint release, the MNOs confirmed that – using fresh investment, and in support of the government-led MNP initiative – Florida-based Syniverse has been selected as the Mobile Number Portability Service Provider (MNPSP) following ‘a rigorous technical and commercial evaluation process’. Going forward, Syniverse is expected to supply and install the necessary technical wherewithal to fulfil its primary function as the official clearinghouse for the MNOs and ensure the smooth implementation of number porting services under the remit of the MNP Act. For its part, meanwhile, Syniverse is tasked to complete all functions outlined in the implementing rules and regulations under the NTC Memorandum Circular 03-06-2019 issued in July 2019. Local press reports note that, with the initial step of setting up the support mechanisms, the actual implementation of MNP ‘will be contingent upon the completion of integration and interoperability tests of the clearinghouse facilities with the separate multi-vendor systems of the mobile operators’. Syniverse estimates the period of integration and interoperability to be ‘no later than 18 months from setting up of the support mechanism. In addition, porting services shall be free of charge to the customers’.