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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Thai regulator approves $7.3 billion telecoms carrier merger

BANGKOK — Thailand’s telecoms regulator has agreed to allow a merger between the country’s two main phone carriers in a decision that raises worries over whether reduced competition will harm consumer interests.

The $7.3 billion deal will merge True Corp. and smaller DTAC, a subsidiary of Norway’s Telenor Group. The new entity, to be called NewCo, will have about 51 million subscribers. The next largest telecoms carrier, AIS, or Advanced Info Service, has 44 million subscribers.

True is owned by Charoen Pokphand (CP) Holding, one of the country’s biggest family-controlled conglomerates. It has 32 million subscribers to DTAC’s 19 million.

Shareholders of True and DTAC, or Total Access Communication Plc., approved the merger plan in April.

The regulatory go-ahead by the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission came late Thursday in a 3-2 vote in favor, with the…

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