Hanoi Telecom Corporation sticks to its effort to acquire the 3G frequency from EVN Telecom, saying it would go against the Competition Law if the deal was awarded to the military-run telecom firm Viettel.
Hanoi Telecom and its foreign partner Hutchison Telecom have sought permission from the Government and related agencies to take over the 3G frequency and infrastructure from the loss-making EVN Telecom.
However, knowing EVN Telecom might be merged into Viettel this November, the Hanoi-based telecom company has continued to petition to the Vietnam Competition Authority, the Vietnam Competition Council and the Vietnam Association for Consumer Protection and Standards.
In Dispatch 585/CV-HTC signed by the firm’s deputy general director Nguyen Anh Dung, Hanoi Telecom stated Viettel would possess more than half of the country’s 3G bandwidths if it acquired the entire resources of EVN Telecom.
This would violate the Competition Law that forbids an enterprise to hold a combined market share of over 50%. Hanoi Telecom was concerned over the monopoly by Viettel on the local telecom market.
The Ministry of Information and Communications reported Viettel currently holds a dominant 37% market share.
If the firm acquired the shared 3G bandwidth of Hanoi Telecom from EVN Telecom, it would be able to kill competition on the market. Hanoi Telecom could not supply 3G services at competitive prices with just half of the bandwidth.
Hanoi Telecom said Viettel would enjoy the free use of all antenna towers and numerous electricity poles acquired from EVN Telecom, while its competitors must rent these facilities at high prices.
Therefore, the high level of economic and resource concentration enjoyed by Viettel would seriously violate the Competition Law and Vietnam’s commitments to the World Trade Organization WTO.
Hanoi Telecom expected the competition authorities and consumer protection association to deal with the matter to ensure a healthy competitive environment for telecom firms in Vietnam.
The Saigon Times Daily