MCI outlines conditions of IOH merger approval, including new coverage targets

6 Jan 2022

Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Information (MCI, known locally as KemKominfo) has outlined the small print contained within its approval of the merger of Indosat Ooredoo and Hutchison 3 Indonesia (Tri), to create an enlarged entity named Indosat Ooredoo Hutchison (IOH). As reported in yesterday’s CommsUpdate, Qatar-based Ooredoo and CK Hutchison Holdings of Hong Kong announced the completion of the USD6 billion merger of their respective telecommunications businesses in Indonesia, creating the archipelago’s second largest mobile network operator behind Telkomsel (Telekomunikasi Selular), with estimated annual revenue of approximately USD3 billion.

Now though, Minister of Communication and Information Johnny G Plate has outlined a number of ‘expectations and conditions’ under which the combination was approved. Specifically, the MCI has tasked IOH to increase the number of on-air base stations by a minimum 11,400 by 2025, at which time it must have at least 52,885 sites across the country. Secondly, the minister said that the enlarged operator will be expected to expand service coverage to at least 7,660 new villages and sub-districts by 2025 – meaning that the total coverage area served by IOH’s cellular services would need to be at least 59,538 villages and sub-districts by that date. In addition, Mr Plate has called on the company to improve its quality of service (QoS) by ‘at least 12.5% for download throughput and 8% for upload throughput’.

IOH’s senior vice president and head of corporate communications Steve Saerang said, however, that the company had yet to determine the new network coverage areas. ‘The company will go on regional visits and discuss investment commitments in each region,’ he told reporters.