/PLDT to meet ‘increasing expectations and criticisms’ with CAPEX boost

PLDT to meet ‘increasing expectations and criticisms’ with CAPEX boost

Filipino telecoms heavyweight PLDT Inc. has revealed it is considering upping its capital expenditure budget for FY 2018 to above that set out currently in its 2017 guidance – PHP46 billion (USD900 million) – as it looks to respond ‘to increasing expectations and criticisms being levelled against the industry about network quality’. In a statement, the telco confirmed that while it can sustain its current CAPEX levels via operating cash flow, to maintain its levels of debt, any higher spend would have to be funded elsewhere – possibly through the sale of assets. PLDT said: ‘One option is to consider PHP46 billion as the normative CAPEX level to support our various network initiatives to further expand the reach of PLDT’s home broadband network as well as enhance the coverage and capacity of our 3G/LTE network across the country’.

Chairman and CEO Manuel Pangilinan noted that the company’s capital expenditure guidance for 2017 remains at PHP38 billion, with an additional PHP15 committed already this year. However, he confirmed a forecast that the works ‘will be finished in 2018’. PLDT’s FY 2018 is not yet set in stone, but it will provide guidance when it announces full-year results in March 2018.

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