Bahrain telecoms grants free birthday calls worth $3.4 million
Bahrain Telecommunications Co. (Batelco) on Monday, July 2, granted every one of its 130,000 residential customers $26 worth of free calls to celebrate its 20th birthday.
The $3.4-million splurge was a "symbolic gesture of appreciation towards our residential fixed-line customers", said Batelco chairman Sheikh Ali Bin Khalifa Al-Khalifa, quoted by newspapers.
Sheikh Ali said Batelco will also give its 2,100 employees, 95 percent of whom are Bahraini, a 100-dinar ($260) bonus on their July pay packets.
"Later this year, we will be announcing further tariff reductions on international direct dial calls which will benefit the business sector and various customer sectors," added Sheikh Ali, who is also transport minister.
The Bahraini government has a 39 percent stake in Batelco, with Britain's Cable and Wireless holding 20 percent and the remaining 41 percent publicly traded.
Bahrain's crown prince, Sheikh Salman Bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, vowed in February that the government would break Batelco's monopoly of the telecommunications sector. ― (AFP, Manama)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)