Gov’t to loosen requirements for 3G telecoms operators2

By Alfred Lee, The China Post

The Directorate General of Telecommunications (DGOT) disclosed recently that companies taking part in the bid for offering 3G telephone service only need to make a deposit of NT$1 billion in order to qualify. This is part of the new regulatory structure for 3G telecommunications management drafted by the DGOT. A previous version of the draft regulation required that a company wishing to offer 3G telephone service should have a paid-in capital of NT$10 billion. DGOT decided to lower the minimum capital requirement to NT$6 billion in its current version of the draft regulation. The current draft regulation also allows a company registered with a paid-in capital of NT$50 million to make the bid as long as the company would increase its capital to the minimum required capital of NT$6 billion later.

The government will prepare an auction in time to issue five 3G telephone licenses before the end of this year, DGOT sources said. A public hearing of the draft regulation will be held next Wednesday, enabling potential investors an opportunity to understand the relevant regulations. After the public hearing, the draft regulation will be submitted to the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC). Bidders will be able to make their bids through a Web site. Each bidder will be allowed to make as many offers as it takes to win the bid. The bidding process may take several days to complete.

The MOTC will publish the bid regulations by the end of August. Potential bidders can submit their applications from September to November. Before the end of November the MOTC will complete screening for the qualifications of the bidders.