The Government of Ethiopia announced its plan to sell five percent of the share of the fully state owned and only telecom operator in the country, Ethio Telecom.
This is indicated at a panel discussion held this morning to assess the progress made to partially privatize Ethio Telecom at the Prime Minister’s Office. It was about two years ago that the government expressed its plan to partially privatize Ethio telecom to foreign telecom operators maintaining the majority share. During the discussion it is indicated that the preparation to partially privatize Ethio Telecom is being finalized.
Since then the country has enacted a new law which led to the introduction of a new regulatory body, Ethiopian Communications Authority (ECA) that will be in charge of over sighting the activities of telecom operators in the country.
During today’s discussion it is stated that 40 percent of the share of Ethiopia telecom will be sold to foreign telecom operator, while the government retains 55 percent of the share and 5 percent will be sold to Ethiopians. During the budget year concluded July 7, 2020, Ethio telecom has announced a revenue of about $1.3 billion.
It is stated that the 5 percent share will be distributed to many Ethiopian but not limited wealthy local companies or individuals. Attending the meeting Prime Minister said that the process of partial privatization of Ethio telecom will be free from corruption.
In addition to partial privatization of Ethio Telecom, the government has also invited international telecom operators to bid for two additional telecom licenses the country is planning to issue soon.
Ethiopia is one of the few countries in the world, which has not opened its telecom services to foreign operators. Currently Ethio Telecom has abound 45 million mobile phone subscribers.