As per a document from the finance ministry released on Wednesday, Ethiopia has decided to proceed with its intentions to sell a 40% stake in the state-owned Ethio Telecom and has requested expressions of interest from foreign businesses. Ahmed Shide, the finance minister, was quoted by the state-run news agency Fana as adding that the ministry had also asked foreign companies to submit bids for a licence for what would be the third telecoms company in the nation.
More Information Regarding the 40% Stake Sale
In Prime Minister Abiy’s campaign to open up the economy, the telecoms sector in Ethiopia is viewed as the big prize. However, efforts to entice investment have been hampered by a nearly two-year war in northern Tigray that has killed thousands of people and dislocated millions. On November 2, the federal government of Ethiopia and the regional troops in Tigray signed a ceasefire deal to put an end to the warfare that had ravaged the northern province for the previous two years.
The government said in March that it had delayed the planned partial privatisation of Ethio Telecom due to the current domestic and international economic climate. The partial sale tendering procedure began in June 2021.
The planned partial privatisation of Ethio Telecom, according to a document from the finance ministry, has Deloitte Consulting Limited as a transaction consultant. Companies have until December 20 to submit expressions of interest. The second international telecoms licence was not mentioned in the text, and the tendering procedure for it was put on hold in December 2021 after requests for bids were made in September of that year.
A consortium led by Safaricom, Kenya’s biggest operator, obtained the first international licence in May 2021 with a bid of $850 million, which might be used as a benchmark for the other licence. The operation of Safaricom Ethiopia began in October.