The Defense Ministry has given itself a majority stake in the new national entity controlling the national telecommunications infrastructure, according to daily business newspaper Al Borsa.
Under a new amendment submitted by the ministry, the role of big telecom companies would be greatly limited both in terms of stake in the entity and its participation, handing over the power to the government.
The changes would cause the Defense Ministry to own a 60-percent share in the national telecom entity, with other ministries owning 20 percent, while the telecom companies would own 20 percent (reduced from 40 percent under the old guidelines).
The guidelines include a proposal that telecom companies will not have any role in extending or installing communication cables, with its role limited only to renting cables from the company managed by the Defense Ministry.
At the end of December, Egypt announced that it would establish the national entity for telecommunications at a value of LE3.8 billion, according to the Communications and Information Technology Ministry (MCIT).
At this point the Egyptian government had announced that its share of the entity would be 60 percent — represented by the Defense Ministry, MCIT, Transportation Ministry, Finance Ministry and Electricity Ministry, and the three mobile network operators (MNOs) would have a share of 11.5 percent each, while Telecom Egypt’s (ETEL) share would be equal to 5.5 percent.
By Ibrahim Alsahary
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