Turkcell threatens to drop multi-billion-dollar Iran deal

Published February 1st, 2005 - 08:36 GMT

Turkish telecommunications major Turkcell threatened Monday to abandon a multi-billion-dollar deal to set up Iran's first mobile telephone network after a special commission trimmed down the company's stake.

A representative of the company, Hakan Toygar, told the official <i>IRNA</i> news agency that Turkcell would have to abandon the deal if Iran's parliament's followed suit after its special commission decided Sunday to limit the company's stake.

Turkey's leading GSM operator Turkcell is expected to invest about three billion dollars in the project, making it one of the biggest foreign investments in Iran since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

On Sunday, members of the parliament's special commission approved
that Iran's share in the contract be raised to 51 percent against a
maximum 49-percent foreign share, according to the agency.

The company, however, has failed to go ahead with the project amid
political saber-rattling inside Iran over worries that the country's
security could be compromised, the news agency added.


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