Department of Information and Communicatioms Technology Secretary Gregorio Honasan II stressed that third telco Dito Telecommunity Corp. faces sanctions if it fails to start operations in 2021.
“‘Pag ‘di nila nagawa ito, ‘yung Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity nila at radio frequencies babawiin ng gobyerno,” Honasan told reporters in Filipino when he inspected the DITO tower in Quezon City last Wednesday.
The government will scrutinize in July if Dito has established its 1,600 telecommunications towers and if the telco can cover 37 percent of the population with 27 megabits per second speed.
Honasan said that aside from the cancellation of its CPCN and frequencies, the government will also confiscate the P25.7-billion performance bond of Dito if it doesn’t live up to its promise.
“There is also a penalty of P10.7 billion in the second year, P8 billion in third year, P5.3 billion in fourth year, and P2.7 billion in fifth year,” he added.
Dito chief administrative officer Adel Tamano, for his part, assured that the network would be ready in July.
The Dito Telecommunity received its certificate of public conveniece and necessity from the National Telecommunications Commission last July 2019 to operate as the country’s third major telco.
Dito, formerly Mislatel Consortium, is composed of Udenna Corp. of Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy, its subsidiary Chelsea Logistics Holdings Inc., China Telecommunications Corp., and Mindanao Islamic Telephone.
DITO targets to start commercial operations in March 2021.
Meanwhile, Chelsea Logistics and Infrastructure Holdings Corp. confirmed that Uy is leading efforts to ask for a government guarantee for a P700-million loan after such million-peso undertaking was rejected by a private bank.
In a disclosure to the local bourse, Chelsea said it asked for a guarantee from the Philippine Guarantee Corp. so that it could borrow funds from one of the country’s main banks for the purchase of a vessel.
“Chelsea Logistics would like to state that it is working with PGC because the group may reach the single borrowers’ limit with one of its financing bank, one of the main banks in the country which supports the shipping industry,” the disclosure stated.
“Thus, the group requires a guarantee to be provided by PGC in order to secure said loan obligation,” the company stated.
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