Panama Snags Bite For Digicel’s Telecoms Licence
By Manny Pham
The Panamanian National Public Services Authority (Autoridad Nacional de los Servicios Publicos, ASEP) revealed it received a bid for the telecoms licence vacated by Digicel Panama.
The sole bidder was General Internacional Telecom Panama (Gitpan), a subsidiary of General International Telecom Limited, it was awarded a 20-year licence with access to the following spectrum bands: 2×15MHz in the 1900MHz band (1850MHz-1865MHz/1930MHz-1945MHz) and 2×10MHz in the 700MHz band (738MHz-748MHz/793MHz-803MHz)
ASEP began the process to find a new licence holder on January 12 and closed the process yesterday (January) 16. The regulator stated it was looking for a company with strong credentials and at least five years of experience in the telecoms sector with a minimum of half a million mobile subscriptions.
Although not a well-known player, General International Telecom struck a deal with Telefonica Centroamerica Inversiones to acquire a 99.3 per cent stake in Telefonica Moviles El Salvador for US$144 million, this deal closed in January 2022
Digicel Panama dropped its licence last year after rivals Cable & Wireless Panama and America Movil gained permission to merge their local units +Movil and Claro, stating the merger made the market unfair for competition.