NBTC tells its telecom committee to bargain for lower porting fee
The telecom committee of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) has instructed its subcommittee to bargain with the mobile-phone number porting operator to lower the fee to below the Bt79 per porting proposed by the operator.
The subcommittee in charge of the mobile phone number porting submitted the Bt79 fee proposal for the telecom committee's consideration late last week. The rate was proposed to the subcommittee by Clearinghouse Co, which was founded by five state and private telecom operators to handle the porting. The present porting fee is Bt99 per porting.
The mobile number portability enables mobile-phone users to continue using existing mobile phone numbers with the new networks they switch to.
Clearinghouse also submitted to the subcommittee the result of the 3:2 voting among the five founders that Clearinghouse should promote massive number porting between two telecom operators which can mutually agree to have the massive porting between them.
Advanced Info Service, Total Access Communication, and TrueMove, which are Clearinghouse founders, voted in favour of the massive porting as they want to encourage the huge number of their existing customers to move to their 3G cellular subsidiaries.
TrueMove, which has around 18 million subscribers, also wants to see the massive porting as its concession will end this September 15.
But TOT and CAT, the other Clearinghouse founders, voted against the massive porting.
The subcommittee conveyed the voting result to the NBTC's telecom committee and the committee viewed that the massive porting should not be done only between the two mutually agreeing telecom operators but among all five of them. It asked the subcommittee to settle the matter with Clearinghouse.
The subcommittee also submitted to the telecom committee the proposal of the five operators of their additional methods of providing this porting service, such as sending an SMS to customers to ask if they want to port their number.
The porting can be approved via an SMS. Currently, mobile-phone users have to ask for the porting service at their mobile phone operators' service counters only.
Regarding this proposal, the telecom committee has instructed the subcommittee to consider these proposed methods carefully to make sure that mobile-phone users are willing to port to any networks with their full consent. If not, this will risk a lawsuit against the related parties by mobile-phone users.