Hearing in sight before NBTC opens bids to operate ThaiCom 4 satellite

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Kalaya chairs the House Committee on Telecommunications and the Digital Economy and Society that oversees the issue.

NBTC, which aims to conclude the tender by June, told the panel that only a handful of companies in Thailand have the expertise to operate satellites. Kalaya also pointed out that the winner of the bid will also need to have huge sums of cash to present as collateral.

She goes on to say that her panel is concerned that there is a perception of collusion due to the low number of bidders and would like to know the opinion of the agencies concerned.

Kalaya added that representatives from NBTC, the National Ministry of Telecommunications, Digital Economy and Society and ThaiCom will be invited to the hearing.

She said the hearing will consult on the possibility of lowering the specifications in a bid to increase the number of bidders.

“But this can be a problem because this profession requires expensive equipment and special expertise,” said the MP.

She added that the NBTC representative admitted that the telecommunications watchdog has not done enough to launch public awareness campaigns on the issue, which has led to a misperception that national ownership will be sold to a private company via the upcoming offering.

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