Rio said Honasan, who was appointed by President Duterte as the agency’s next head, is amenable to make revisions to the draft common tower policy and not limit the registered independent tower companies that will be registered by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to just two.
File
Honasan favors more common tower builders
Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - December 1, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Incoming Information and Communications Technology chief Sen. Gregorio Honasan is in favor of more than two players building common telecommunications infrastructure in the country, the interim acting head of the Department of Information and Communications Technology Eliseo Rio said.

Rio said Honasan, who was appointed by President Duterte as the agency’s next head, is amenable to make revisions to the draft common tower policy and not limit the registered independent tower companies that will be registered by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to just two.

“He is supporting what we are telling him, that presidential adviser on economic affairs RJ (Ramon Jacinto) should not really have that policy enforced because it will bring us to court,” Rio said.

“It is okay with him (Honasan), (as long as) it is okay for the industry,” Rio said.

The provision limiting to two the number of NTC-registered tower companies under the proposed memorandum circular of the DICT and the NTC on common telecommunications infrastructure has been a highly contested topic among telco stakeholders.

The draft version states that a maximum of two independent tower companies will be registered by the NTC in the first four years of the implementation of the common tower policy, after which the NTC may register new tower firms if necessary, especially in rural areas.

Deployment of all telecommunications towers shall be performed only by the NTC-registered tower companies, except when it is unable to do so despite the request from the telco operators.

The provision has received strong opposition from foreign tower companies eyeing to do business in the country, incumbents PLDT and Globe, as well as the Philippine Competition Commission.

The limit is being pushed by Jacinto, the Presidential Adviser for Economic Affairs and Information Technology Communications, while Rio has bucked it, saying that its implementation would force telcos to bring the government to court.

Rio earlier said the DICT is working to resolve differences with Jacinto with regards to the rules and regulations of the common tower policy before the year ends as it wants to see start of construction of the shared infrastructure by the start of next year.

He said Honasan would likely be the one signing the final version of the memorandum circular instead of him.

“I have talked with Sen. Honasan and he is just awaiting the confirmation from the Commission on Appointment and that may come soon because Dec. 12, Congress will take a Christmas brake and of course there will be no session at that time,” Rio said.

Rio said he is keen on continue serving in the DICT, as he is open to taking an undersecretary position in the agency once Honasan takes over.

GREGORIO HONASAN TELECOMMUNICATIONS INFRASTRUCTURE
Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

SIGN IN
or sign in with