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From ₱200 Fine To ₱2 Million Per Day For Telcos Fail To Deliver Advertised Internet Speed

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) wants to impose fines of up to PHP2 million per day for telecommunications companies and service providers that will fail to deliver their advertised Internet speeds.

During the Senate’s plenary debates on the proposed 2021 budget of the DICT Friday, Senator Grace Poe raised that some companies tend to offer promising Internet speeds but do not actually deliver on their promise.

“Marami kasi sa kanilang mga telco, naga-advertise na ganito kabilis ‘yong Internet speed pero hindi naman. So, kung hindi nila magawa ito… how much penalty does the DICT deem just to impose on these telco companies?” she said.

Further, Senator Panfilo Lacson, sponsor of the DICT budget, responded on behalf of DICT Secretary Gregorio Honasan who was present at the Senate plenary hall.

“They are recommending an increase to PHP2 million per day so that telcos will be compelled to deliver,” he said.

The senator said the government, at present, only imposes a fine of PHP200 per day for any violations of the terms and conditions of public service.

This was provided under Section 21 of the Public Services Act which was signed in 1936. 

“So kailangan po natin i-amend ‘yung Public Service Act to increase the penalty to be incurred by those telcos that fail to deliver the allowable Internet speed,” Senator Lacson said.

“Since we are in the process of deliberating some of the amendments of the Public Service Act, maybe we can introduce that particular amendment to increase the penalties,” he added.

Senator Poe, chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Public Services, also said that there is a pending Senate Bill No. 1831 or the Better Internet Bill which seeks to prohibit Internet service providers from advertising or offering Internet service speeds that they cannot consistently provide.

Under the bill, they “shall provide to their subscribers 80 percent of their advertised speed available at 80 percent of the time.”

The bill also seeks to set minimum speed thresholds for the services to be delivered by the telcos and Internet service providers in urban and rural areas.

The bill is still awaiting plenary discussion.

Senator Lacson stated that according to the DICT’s latest tracking, the Philippines has an average Internet speed of 26 Mbps (megabits per second) for fixed broadband and 16 Mbps for mobile.

“Which we don’t believe, because more often than not, especially when we’re moving, hindi nga tayo umaabot ng five Mbps. Sometimes we are between 3 or 4 Mbps,” the senator said. 


Meanwhile, the DICT said 27 Mbps is “enough” for better Internet experience.

“Yes, they believe that there should be a minimum Internet speed. Sa kanilang palagay, ‘yong 27 Mbps, sapat na po ‘yon na Internet speed,” Senator Lacson quoted DICT officials as saying.

Earlier, during President Rodrigo Duterte’s fifth State of the Nation Address, ordered telecommunications companies Smart and Globe to improve their services in the next five months or the country will do away with them.

“Kindly improve your services before December. Tell us now if you cannot really improve on it, because I will work... The next two years will be spent improving the telecommunications of this country without you,” he said.

The President added that the two companies have been operating for years yet the public keeps getting “lousy” services and transactions.

“The patience of the Filipino is reaching its limit he said. I will be the one to articulate the anger of the Filipino people and you might not want what I intended to do with you,” he said. 

From ₱200 Fine To ₱2 Million Per Day For Telcos Fail To Deliver Advertised Internet Speed From ₱200 Fine To ₱2 Million Per Day For Telcos Fail To Deliver Advertised Internet Speed Reviewed by Yen The Explorer on November 21, 2020 Rating: 5

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