It is as simple as shooting ducks in a barrel to criticise last week's auction of licences to operate the 3G mobile phone service. But it is also too easy to forget that the auction results have two highly positive outcomes.
Thailand is finally on the cusp of actually getting a legitimate, national 3G network up and running, at a price consumers can afford to use. The systemic problems revealed in last week's uncompetitive spectrum sale deserve strong attention. The results of the auction, however, should stand.
Critics are having something of a field day while railing against the auction. And there is no denying that the spectrum sale was one of the most poorly conducted such sales, ever. There was actually no competition to speak of. Three licences were up for grabs, and three bidders were approved. The auction price received was just over 2% more than the reserve price.
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