Thailand’s largest provincial fixed line operator TT&T is planning to begin a nationwide rollout of broadband internet and telephony services by the end of this year after being granted a ‘Type 3’ licence by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), the first of its type to be issued to a privately owned operator in the country. The 20-year concession, covering all regions including Bangkok, was awarded to Triple T Broadband, a wholly owned subsidiary of TT&T, which currently provides fixed line and broadband services in provincial areas via a build-transfer-operate (BTO) licence with state-run incumbent telco TOT Corp. Triple T Broadband will have to pay a licence fee of 3% of its annual revenue, a numbering fee of THB1 per telephone number per month and a universal service contribution of 4% of turnover to support rural telecoms access. Prachuab Tantinont, president of Triple T Broadband, said the company planned to spend around THB6 billion (USD158 million) building a new network in Bangkok and the provinces. In the first phase, it plans a network with capacity for 100,000 lines in metropolitan areas, and 200,000 in rural regions. He added it would take Triple T Broadband eight months to build the network, with the first services expected to be available in certain areas by the end of the year, and full nationwide coverage to follow within three to four years. In Bangkok, Triple T is initially targeting corporate and public sector broadband users, as well as condominiums, housing estates and newly built communities, avoiding investment in areas where other operators offer the same services.
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