Turkey's Privatization Administration said on Thursday, May 17, a tender for the block sale of 33.5 percent of Turk Telekom had been cancelled, a move widely expected since Turkey passed a law to sell more of the company.
Turkey's parliament passed legislation earlier this month to privatize almost all of the landline monopoly, with the state keeping only a "golden share" in the company.
The old tender envisaging a 33.5 percent sale was effectively made redundant by the new plan, which foresees a majority sell-off while limiting foreign stakes to 45 percent.
The privatization is expected to be the biggest in Turkey's history on the basis of 1998 research putting the company's value at $10 billion. But the government has said it will reassess that valuation, and it is not expected to carry out the sale this year.
Analysts say a global downturn in the telecoms market due to high debt levels across the industry is likely to make a sale difficult under current circumstances.
The government has set privatization revenues targets this year at just one billion dollars, indicating it accepts that it will not sell Turk Telekom this year. ― (Reuters, Ankara)
© Reuters 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)