Embattled conglomerate First Pacific has extended an olive branch to the board of Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) as part of a plan to overcome objections to handing over a controlling interest to tycoon John Gokongwei. In a letter to PLDT board members, First Pacific offered a compromise over fears that a Gokongwei-led takeover would raise antitrust concerns, given Mr Gokongwei also controls Digital Telecommunications Philippines (Digitel), one of PLDT's largest rivals. First Pacific and the Gokongwei group agreed last month to the creation of a company - majority-held by Gokongwei - that would take over First Pacific's 24.5 per cent PLDT stake and a controlling stake in Metro Pacific, First Pacific's Philippine property arm. Since then, First Pacific has been locked in a bitter dispute with PLDT's board and its executive chairman, Manuel Pangilinan, over the proposed deal. First Pacific said in a statement it had written a letter to each PLDT board member outlining a plan that encouraged both sides to quickly bridge the gap between their respective positions. The First Pacific compromise includes a five-point plan that helps address the PLDT board's concerns. First Pacific said it hoped the plan would help 'initiate constructive progress' on the proposed transaction with the Gokongwei group. At the top of the plan's agenda is a meeting with PLDT to jointly determine due diligence review parameters and address PLDT management's concerns that commercially sensitive information about its operations could be leaked to Digitel, inadvertently or otherwise, during the process. Under the compromise proposal, PLDT and First Pacific would agree beforehand on what information the Gokongwei group would be allowed to see. PLDT maintains that Mr Gokongwei cannot sit on its board or even conduct due diligence on the former monopoly carrier since he also heads Digitel, claiming it would violate both antitrust laws and PLDT's company by-laws. The compromise proposal calls for First Pacific and the Gokongwei group to negotiate the details of the transaction documentation and to make 'an appropriate presentation to the PLDT board of directors'. The presentation would focus on 'those aspects of the final agreed transaction that are of legitimate concern for the PLDT board, including PLDT's by-laws and related procedures for director nomination and election', the statement said. The compromise also calls for First Pacific and the Gokongwei group to meet with Japan's Nippon Telegraph and Telephone, which owns 15 per cent of PLDT, to address its existing shareholders' agreement with First Pacific.