Global 5G: Malaysia Ready to Offer Telcos 70% Stake in DNB 5G

Malaysia is ready to offer a 70% stake in the Digital National Berhad (DNB) to the private telecom firms
in the country. The private telecoms do not want Malaysia to get 5G network services from a single
player. Unlike other countries, Malaysia had created DNB to offer commercial 5G network services in
the country.

The private telcos are not comfortable with the notion and want the government to consider a
second 5G provider in an impasse with DNB over pricing and other issues, Reuters reported. A single
government-run 5G service provider can hamper the competition in the country. Thus, there’s a need
for the involvement of private operators to offer 5G as well. Malaysia said that it is open to offering up
to a 70% stake in the DNB to the private telcos and owning the remaining 30%. This would enable
private telcos to become a part of Malaysia’s 5G journey and help with speeding up infrastructure

The government isn’t going to allow any second operator to offer 5G but will offer equity to the private
telcos in DNB if they want it. The agency will be regulated by the Communications Ministry, with the
government owning a 30% stake in the 5G vehicle if the deal goes through with the private telcos.
DNB has further extended the date of offering free 5G services to carriers to June 30, 2022. This is done
with an aim to offer a seamless transition to operators who haven’t yet signed up for its services.

Malaysia wanted a single shared 5G network in the country to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and
speed up infrastructure construction. While it may create scares of monopoly in the country, the DNB
has said that the cost of accessing its 5G network would be lesser for users than what they had to pay
for 4G to the private telecom operators.