17 Jul 2007
Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) has said it has the first rights to acquire shares in India’s largest telecom company, Bharti Airtel, from Singapore’s state-linked investment arm Temasek Holdings. The holding company, which owns 56% of SingTel, has reportedly been granted an option by Bharti Enterprise to purchase a further 4.99% stake in Bharti Airtel. However, it stressed that at this time this was just an ‘option’ and no firm details have been agreed on any deal. In a statement SingTel said: ’The relevant parties have reached agreement that SingTel and Bharti have first rights to the shares acquired by Temasek pursuant to the exercise of the option, subject to certain conditions’. SingTel currently has a 30.5% equity interest in the Indian operator.