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Iraq to allow new bidders to contest mobile licences in July

1 Jul 2005

Iraq has announced that it will seek foreign bids for the country’s four mobile phone licences, with bidding scheduled to begin on 21 July, five months before the licenses held by the existing operators are set to expire. The four mobile concessions, each valid until the end of 2005, are currently held by Asia-Cell (in northern Iraq), Orascom Telecom Iraq (in central Iraq/Baghdad), Sana Tel (in the northern territory of Sulaymaniya) and Atheer Telecommunications. Atheer was obliged to roll out a network covering southern regions before launching services in Baghdad in March this year. Analysts predict there will be five million mobile phone users in Iraq within three years and eight million within ten years.


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