Shinawatra Gets Reprieve on GSM Label Until After Poll

The debate on whether Cam­bodia Shinawatra can use the “GSM-1800” label for its new digital mobile phone network has been delayed until after the July 26 election, Posts and Telecom­mu­nications Minister So Khun said Thursday.

“I’m very busy in the pro­vinces,” said So Khun, who is a campaigning as a CPP candidate in Takeo province. “It will be solved after the election.”

In the meantime, the designation has reappeared on the company advertisements. One Shin­awatra official said the company sent a letter last week to the ministry presenting its case but had not yet received a response, so it put the word back on its advertisements.

The ministry in May ordered Shinawatra to immediately stop using the “GSM-1800” designation for its new system. The ministry said the company’s contract states the system’s name is “DCS-1800” and not “GSM-1800.”

Both GSM, which stands for Global System for Mobile, and DCS, which means Digital Cell System, are systems that use radio frequencies to give callers a clearer connection than non-digital mobile systems.

Shinawatra maintains the “DCS-1800” was re­named GSM by the industry and that it is therefore entitled to use that label.

The Thai Cambodian joint venture briefly dropped the designation from its newspaper advertisements in June, but then last week reinstituted it. So Khun said the ministry’s silence on the issue does not mean it has acquiesced.

“We did not say OK,” said So Khun.

“We just have not had a chance to talk.”




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