Africa-based IHS Towers has decided to retract its intent to invest in the Philippines as a telco tower builder, citing concerns on the government’s common towers policy, according to Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Undersecretary Ramon “RJ” Jacinto.
“They wanted the guidelines improved,” said Jacinto, but he did not specify the tower builder’s concerns. IHS Towers was one of the 24 local and foreign common tower companies that wanted to invest, including Edotco Group Sdn. Bhd., Aboitiz Group, ISOC Asia Telecom Towers, American Towers Inc., EEI Corp., among others. These companies signed a memorandum of understanding prior to DICT’s release of the new common towers policy in May.
“They have expressed concerns. If not addressed, they may back out too. We have to improve the guidelines right away,” Jacinto warned. Earlier, the DICT envisioned to build at least 50,000 additional telco towers to boost the country’s connectivity. But with the tower builders backing out, it might delay the agency’s target.