Globe says DITO owes it P622-M in 'interconnect penalties'; third telco disputes claim

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 09 2022 02:55 PM | Updated as of Aug 09 2022 05:51 PM

MANILA - Globe Telecom and DITO Telecommunity on Tuesday traded barbs over interconnection issues. 

Globe said DITO owes it P622 million in “interconnect penalties” and has asked the National Telecommunications Commission to compel the Dennis Uy-led telco to pay the amount. The company also asked the NTC to be allowed to temporarily disconnect interconnection trunk lines with DITO.

DITO meanwhile has disputed the amount and accused Globe of ‘Abuse of Dominant Position.’

The Philippines’ third major telco player earlier filed a complaint before the Philippine Competition Commission accusing Globe and PLDT-Smart of abusing their position. 

DITO said majority of calls from its subscribers failed to get through to Globe and Smart subscribers.

‘UNPAID PENALTIES’

The Ayala-led telco said the interconnect penalties stemmed from fraudulent calls placed through DITO's network to Globe, bypassing proper voice traffic channels.
 
“An average of 1,000 fraudulent calls– identified as international in origin but masked as local calls– are allowed to pass through DITO’s network to Globe users every day, in violation of interconnect rules,” Globe said in a statement. 
 
DITO has refused to compensate Globe for the penalty covering one year, from July 2021 to July 2022, the Ayala-led telco said. 

Globe also claimed that in contrast “zero or no bypass traffic has been allowed to pass from Globe to DITO due to its advanced monitoring systems and sophisticated network protection from illegal calls.”

Globe said fraudulent traffic is still rising despite assurances from DITO that it has improved its Fraud Management System capability to block illegal calls.
 
“DITO’s twin failures to check these bypass activities and pay Globe what it is justly due have worked on a continuing serious prejudice against Globe,” Globe said in its pleading.
 
Globe said its Interconnection trunks were also placed at serious risk of abuse and its network became congested due to the fraudulent calls. 

‘ABUSE OF DOMINANT POSITION’

DITO chief administrative officer Adel Tamano meanwhile fired back at Globe saying the Ayala-led telco was violating competition rules. 

“Firstly, Globe’s position that interconnection will be done only if DITO pays for these alleged penalties is an admission that they are making interconnection, which is mandated by law, subject to the acceptance of this alleged obligation. This falls squarely into Sec 15 (C) of the Philippine Competition Act,” Tamano said. 

Section 15 (c) of the Act refers to “Abuse of Dominant Position” when a bigger and more established company makes “a transaction subject to acceptance by the other parties of other obligations which, by their nature or according to commercial usage, have no connection with the transaction.”

Tamano added that Globe also violated PCC’s rules of procedure by disclosing DITO’s alleged penalties. 

He also maintained that DITO is also a victim of fraudulent calls, which are made by third parties. Tamano also disputed Globe’s assertion that DITO has not taken any serious actions to curtail fraudulent calls.

“It is not true that DITO has not taken steps to stop ISR (International Simple Resale) calls to Globe. We have the data and the facts to show the steps undertaken by DITO to minimize these ISR calls,” the DITO official said. 

Tamano said they will push ahead with their case filed with the PCC. 

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