Ericsson’s on-off ICE contract upheld after court battle

3 Jun 2005

A Costa Rican court has thrown out an attempt to annul a USD130 million GSM expansion contract awarded to Swedish vendor Ericsson by the country’s monopoly wireless provider ICE Celular. The lawsuit, instigated by lawyer, Pablo Barahona, was launched last week against the officials of the comptroller’s office, reviving allegations of bribery between employees of ICE and Ericsson. The contract, for the deployment of 600,000 GSM lines, got the green light in March this year despite being annulled earlier by the comptroller amidst an internal investigation into alleged corruption. ICE says it hopes to have around 200,000 operational GSM connections by October 2005. The country ran out of new mobile connections last December.

Costa Rica, Grupo ICE, Grupo ICE (Kolbi)