• NTC grants La Union cable system to PLDT

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    The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has granted the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) the ownership, maintenance and operation rights to the $550-million cable landing station in La Union.

    In an NTC ruling dated March 14, the commission finally approved the ex-parte motion filed by the PLDT in September last year to have full ownership and operational rights to the 20,000-kilometer fiber Asia-America Gateway (AAG) cable station in La Union.

    Granted the certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN), the PLDT is now entitled to operate and maintain the AAG submarine cable network for providing better technological service to the public.

    “[This] will redound to the interest of the general public by providing redundancy to existing submarine cable system, better survivability in case of natural catastrophes and to provide increasing demand for better technology, additional capacity and higher speed,” the NTC ruling read.

    In turn, the PLDT is to submit a written acceptance of the terms and conditions of the previous Provisional Authority that authorized the La Union AAG station construction, carry out its operational powers in the cable landing station.

    The La Union AAG landing system was fully operational in November 2009.

    The NTC also disclosed that the PLDT would pay yearly supervision and regulations fee (SRF), with the telephone company paying a total of P661 million for 2013 SRF.

    The La Union AAG cable network connects countries like Brunei, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and the west coast of the United States.

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