NTC approves Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite internet service registration

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 27) — Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite internet service company has successfully registered in the Philippines.

In a statement Friday, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) said it has approved the registration of Starlink Internet Services Philippines Inc. as a value-added service (VAS) provider.

“Starlink’s VAS registration now allows the company to directly access satellite systems, build and operate broadband facilities to offer internet services. The NTC’s swift processing of Starlink’s VAS provider registration was meant to expedite the service’s immediate roll-out,” said the regulator.

NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba also affirmed the agency’s commitment to help ensure Starlink’s rollout of services “will be done expeditiously and professionally.”

The regulator issued the VAS license “30 minutes after” the submission of the application with complete requirements, according to Atty. Bien Marquez of Quisumbing Torres - the counsel of Starlink’s operator SpaceX.

“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,” Marquez added.

The Philippines will be the first Southeast Asian country to offer Starlink services, which involve high-speed low latency satellite internet with download speed of between 100 to 200 Megabits per second (Mbps) at cost-effective rates.

Starlink is seen to accommodate villages in urban and suburban areas, along with rural areas with unserved or undeserved internet access services.

The Department of Trade and Industry earlier said that SpaceX hopes to launch its first gateway in the Philippines before the end of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term next month.