BANGKOK, 25 July 2012-Colonel Settapong Malisuwan, Chairman of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), disclosed that the new law forbidding foreign ownership of a Thai telecommunication company has been effective since yesterday with an aim to prohibit foreign intervention of the 3G services.
According to the law, the number of shares held by a foreign national should not exceed 49% of all company’s shares. Such nature of the company will also, according to him, take into account the levels of foreign influence in the company’s decision making process, the voting system, how the revenues are being divided among the shareholders and where the capital comes from.
The law, he added, will give an idea for those companies wishing to bid for the 3G services decide whether they have sufficient qualifications. The imposition of the new telecommunication law has also automatically rendered the case against DTAC inapplicable.
NBTC Secretary-General Thakorn Tantasit said the NBTC has also raised awareness of the must-carry rule, which is also expected to be enforced to eliminate copyright violations in the broadcasting industry.
The Secretary General insisted that the new regulation does not violate copyrights as purported by the Department of Intellectual Property. The law stipulates that the must-carry rule will not be applied to a copyright holder of a TV program that is not being broadcast on free TV channels.