Congress OKs transfer of Mislatel's ownership

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 22 2019 11:18 PM | Updated as of May 23 2019 01:52 AM

MANILA (UPDATE) - Congress has approved the transfer of ownership of Mislatel—the country’s 3rd telecom industry player.

The House of Representatives on Monday concurred with Senate amendments to House Concurrent Resolution (HCR) 23, which approves the transfer, sale or assignment of the controlling interest of Mindanao Islamic Telephone Company.

HCR 23 was filed at the House December 3, 2018. The Senate adopted it with amendments on February 6, 2019 before the House agreed with the Senate’s amendments.

Mislatel’s original franchise, Republic Act 8627, was approved on April 19, 1998.

Udenna Corporation, Chelsea Logistics Holdings Corp., and China Telecommunications Corp. got majority control and ownership through a binding bidding agreement.

Under the law, franchise holders cannot just transfer ownership without getting congressional approval.

In a statement, Mislatel said it is "grateful" to Congress for approving the change of ownership.

“We are particularly thankful that the Congress included this matter in their order of business immediately upon resumption of Congress," Mislatel spokesman Adel Tamano said.

"This shows Congress’ unwavering support of the President and his goal of providing better telecommunication and ICT services by fostering competition in the sector."

The Mislatel consortium secured rights from a government bidding last year to use frequencies for a new telecommunications player.