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Guam cellular system purchased by DoCoMo Inc


Posted: 25 Oct 2006

Japan-based NTT DoCoMo Inc. got the permission from U.S. law enforcement and homeland security officials to purchase Guam Cellular & Paging Inc. and Guam Wireless Telephone Co. L.L.C. The security agreement was signed on Oct. 19 between the Department of Justice, FBI and Department of Homeland Security with the Federal Communications Commission. This deal provides shows the future telecom deals involving foreign investments into or outright purchases of American telecom carriers in the post-9/11 world.

The agencies told the FCC they have taken the position to satisfy their obligations to protect the national security, enforce the laws, and preserve the safety of the public could be impaired by transactions in which foreign entities will own or operate a part of the U.S. telecommunications system, or in which foreign-located facilities will be used to provide domestic telecommunications services to U.S. customers.

The FCC was induced to reject the DoCoMo-Guam Cellular deal L.L.C. by TeleGuam Holdings, on the ground of having competitive problems, and the creation of a new precedent on foreign ownership could undermine national security. Guam being a U.S. territory is one of the most strategically important U.S. bases in the Pacific. Guam seems to have the potential to be a battleground for competing third-generation mobile phone technologies.

DoCoMo is going to perfect the quality of Guam Wireless' GSM network, by adding GPRS capability. As well DoCoMo is planning to introduce a W-CDMA network for third-generation wireless services. The DoCoMo-Guam Cellular transaction is supposed to be investigated by the FCC on request of CDMA Development Group.

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