NOW Telecom gets favorable ARTA ruling

NOW Telecom Company Inc. (NOW Telecom) has received a favorable decision from the Anti- Red Tape Authority (ARTA) for its nationwide cellular mobile telephony service.

In an Omnibus Order released February 3, ARTA affirmed with finality its earlier resolution approving NOW Telecom’s assignment of 220Mhz of radio frequencies namely, 1970Mhz-1980Mhz paired with 2160Mhz to 2170Mhz and 3.6Ghz to 3.8Ghz, including 5G frequencies for mobile and fixed wireless.

In March last year, ARTA ordered the National Telecommunications Commission to assign mobile frequencies to NOW Telecom after about 16 years.

NTC contested the order, which ARTA, in turn, rejected.

As early as 2005, NTC granted NOW Telecom a CMTS provisional authority, on the basis of the latter’s legal, technical, and financial qualifications during hearings conducted before the NTC.

Despite repeated pleadings from NOW Telecom, NTC did not assign the company the frequencies needed to implement its CMTS provisional authority.

ARTA noted that the 16-year-delay in the assignment of frequencies is a violation of the law that aims to increase efficiency in public service by reducing processing time, eliminating red tape, simplifying requirements and procedures, and expediting both business and non-business transactions with the government.

Engr. Rene Rosales, NOW Telecom President, said: “With the recent ARTA ruling, NOW Telecom will be able to continue pursuing its mobile broadband services aspirations that have been hampered for more than 16 years due to the lack of sufficient frequencies to operate. NOW Telecom has been a holder of a CMTS Provisional Authority alongside Smart Telecommunications and Globe Telecom prior to the 3rd Telco Bidding.”

By: Manila Standard