Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has announced that it has led the consortium that got the licence to operate Sudan’s second nationwide fixed line phone service. Etisalat-led Kanartel made the approved bid at euros 45 million.
The National Telecommunication Commission (NTC), Sudan’s regulatory authority, confirmed midweek that the Corporation-led Kanartel was selected over the two rival consortiums left in the competition and would begin operations within a year.
The 40 per cent Etisalat-owned consortium got the licence in the face of stiff competition from second round opponents Egyptian Telecom and Tamara, a grouping of Korean companies. The other interested operator consortiums dropped out after the first round of the tender and were not invited for negotiations.
This licence is a further significant achievement for an Etisalat-led consortium in a matter of months, following the Corporation’s involvement in the recent success in landing the massive $3.457 billion second GSM licence in Saudi Arabia.
Mohammad H. Omran, Etisalat’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “The second fixed line licence in Sudan is a huge success for our efforts to roll out our premium services and cutting-edge technology across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. We have become a truly regional player and this latest market of operation can only strengthen our position as the leading communications operator in the region.
“Etisalat is focused on achieving its expansion goals to become the driving force for change in the region’s communications sector. We believe that our customer-focused business strategy will ensure that we achieve our objectives.”
Etisalat will manage, operate and maintain the Kanartel network. The agreement is similarly structured to the deal put together by Etisalat Etitihad, the consortium that won the Saudi second GSM licence and Kanartel will see work created for 2,000 employees within a five-year plan.
Mr. Omran added: “The Sudan market has its own needs and requirements and our aim is to satisfy these.”
“We believe the people of Sudan will welcome the element of choice and the contribution of Kanartel not only to communications in the country but also to the economy and to the employment opportunities available. We fully intend to deploy the full range of our advanced technologies to provide a range of services that is of the highest standard.” (menareport.com)