Malaysian ministries start on action plan for second 5G network

Malaysian ministries start on action plan for second 5G network

Four ministries in Malaysia reportedly held talks on Saturday to develop an action plan to implement the country’s second 5G network, while telcos are expected to meet this month’s deadline to finalise their investment in the first one, Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB).

According to the Bernama news agency, Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil said in a Facebook post Saturday that representatives from the Ministry of Communications, the Ministry of Digital, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Investment, Trade, and Industry met that afternoon to discuss their respective roles and functions in implementing the dual 5G network model.

The Ministry of Communications has been planning to launch a second 5G network to compete with existing wholesale 5G operator DNB since May 2023. The launch of the second operator has been contingent on two conditions, the first being that DNB achieve 80% coverage in populated areas. That condition was met at the end of last year.

The second condition is the finalisation of the share subscription agreements (SSAs) signed by Telekom Malaysia, Maxis, U Mobile, YTL and CelcomDigi’s Infranation in December 2023 take a collective 70% stake in DNB. The SSAs have not yet been finalised because the telcos are still negotiating over “condition precedents” that have to be settled before the SSAs can take effect.

Last month, Fahmi said the new DNB board had given the telcos 20 days to sort everything out, adding that they will not be allowed to make bids for the government’s planned second 5G network until the SSAs are completed.

On Saturday, Fahmi said that all five telcos are now ready to complete the SSA process by the deadline.

"The telcos must complete the share subscription agreement for DNB equity (stakes) by June 21, and generally they are ready to sign it,” he told Bernama, adding that he is optimistic the formal process of implementing the second network will be able to start after June 21.


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