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NTC approves registration of Musk’s Starlink

Starlink mission. SpaceX/Flickr

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) announced on Friday that it recently approved Starlink Internet Services Philippines, Inc.’s registration as a value-added service (VAS) provider, allowing it to directly access satellite systems, build and operate broadband facilities to offer internet services in the country.

Starlink, a satellite internet constellation operated by billionaire Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), will offer “high speed low latency satellite internet service with download speed between 100Mbps to 200Mbps” to Filipinos, the NTC said in a statement.

The NTC approved Starlink Internet Services Philippines’ VAS registration on May 26, according to a copy of the certificate of registration provided by the agency.

The company’s certificate of registration is valid until April 14, 2023.

“We would like to thank the NTC for issuing Starlink’s VAS license 30 minutes after we submitted our application with complete requirements. This shows the government’s seriousness in addressing the connectivity needs of our countrymen in unserved and underserved areas. This will also prepare us in the event of natural disasters and calamities,” Bien Marquez of Quisumbing Torres, SpaceX’s counsel, was quoted as saying in the NTC’s news release.

NTC Commissioner Gamaliel A. Cordoba said the agency is “steadfast in helping ensure that roll-out of Starlink’s internet access services will be done expeditiously and professionally.” 

According to the agency, the Philippines will be the first country in Southeast Asia to offer Starlink services. 

“Starlink is expected to cover villages in urban and suburban areas and rural areas that remain unserved or underserved with internet access services. The service is expected to bring cost effective internet access in these areas,” it said. — Arjay L. Balinbin

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