Cellcos facing closure after regulator demands more cash

11 Jul 2007

AllAfrica.com reports that MTN has been issued with a retrospective 600% increase in licence fees from Benin’s telecoms regulator, the TRA. The news story states that the contracts of MTN and a rival operator, Atlantique Telecom, were suspended on Monday with the TRA claiming that both networks had changed their names without permission. The respective networks are currently still carrying calls, but this will end tomorrow unless they each sign a new licence deal, in which is a clause demanding USD60 million in licence fees. MTN acquired the network in the country with its USD5.5 billion takeover of Investcom. The network traded previously as Areeba Benin and has about 514,000 users, or a 40% market share. Mobile penetration in the country stands at an estimated 19%.

Benin, MTN Group