Singtel associate AIS ordered to pay $1.37 billion to Thai telco

SINGAPORE – Singtel’s Thai associate, Advanced Info Service (AIS), has been ordered by anarbitration tribunal to pay 31.07 billion baht (S$1.37 billion), plus interest, to Thai telco, TOT Public Company.

The interest of 1.25 per cent per month is to date back to Nov 30, 2015.

TOT’s claim relates to alleged unlawful contract amendments dating back to 2001 and 2002 in a cellular mobile telephone service agreement between the two. Following a dispute, TOT had claimed for an additional payment of 62.77 billion baht as it claimed that certain amendments in the agreement resulted in the loss of benefit to TOT.

Mobile operator AIS said: “The company disagrees with such award for the reason that it was unlawful. Therefore, we are proceeding to submit the case to the Central Administrative Court for the revocation of the Arbitral Tribunal’s award within 90 days after receiving the award.

As the dispute is not final and the company will take further legal action, such award does not impact the company’s financial status, liquidity nor the ability to service debts.”

In 1990, TOT had granted AIS the right to operate a mobile phone network for 25 years, The Business Times had previously reported. The dispute involves a 2001 amendment that reduced the portion of revenues in prepaid services AIS had to share with TOT. Another contested amendment in 2002 allowed AIS to deduct roaming fees from the concession fees payable to TOT.

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