The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) of the Philippines approved the registration of Starlink in the country.
The approval means that Starlink can start providing internet services in the Philippines.
The NTC approved Starlink as a value-added service provider. This means that SpaceX can directly access satellite systems. SpaceX will also be able to build and operate broadband facilities in the country.
Commissioner of the NTC, Gamaliel Cordoba, said this on the approval:
The NTC is steadfast in helping ensure that roll-out of Starlink’s internet access services will be done expeditiously and professionally. The NTC’s swift processing of Starlink’s VAS provider registration was meant to expedite the service’s immediate roll-out.
In late March, we reported that SpaceX was in the midst of the approval process and that Pilipino customers would soon be able to sign up for the service.
The Philippines is the first country in Southeast Asia to approve Starlink services.
SpaceX’s legal representative in the country, Bien Marquez of Quisumbing Torres, had this to say:
We would like to thank the NTC for issuing Starlink’s VAS license 30 minutes after we submitted our application with complete requirement. 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.
SpaceX proper did not comment on the update, nor did they provide an exact date on which people can sign up for the service. However, the rumours are SpaceX will start operating by June 30.
Elon Musk commented on the approval this morning on Twitter.