Globe, PLDT cleared to consolidate SMC case

telecomasia.net

The Philippines' Court of Appeals has approved an application from the nation's two major operators to consolidate their legal challenge against the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) over their acquisition of the telecoms assets of conglomerate San Miguel Corporation.

Both Globe and PLDT have petitioned the court to compel the PCC declare the San Miguel transaction as “deemed approved.”

The PCC is conducting a comprehensive review of the potential impact of the acquisition, which includes large allocations of spectrum, on competition and the public benefit.

The regulatory body had been opposing efforts by the two operators to consolidate their petition into a single case.

Globe general counsel Froilan Castelo said the court's decision contradicts the PCC's claim that the operators have been engaged in forum shopping.

“Globe has followed the rules, and that motion to consolidate is just in accordance with Rule 31 of the Rules of Court,” he said.

“This is only but fitting as all Globe's actions on this matter are well within the bounds of the rules...  We are disappointed that it is the PCC itself that does not follow the rules - the rules of court when it opposes the consolidation of the cases; and their own rules.”

Castelo also disputed the PCC's claim that the operators have been uncooperative during the investigation process. He said Globe has cooperated fully with the government body, providing more information than required.

“These submissions were done in good faith and went beyond what the PCC actually requires by their own rules.  In addition to these, Globe even sought a dialogue with the PCC to explain its position and answer any concern the PCC may have regarding the transaction,” he said.

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