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Etisalat unconcerned about possible new competition

28 Sep 2007

UAE incumbent Etisalat is unconcerned about the potential arrival of a third telco in the Gulf state, reports CEO Ahmed Abdulkarim Julfar said it would be a bigger problem for Etisalat’s competitor Du than it would be for itself. ‘Normally they say the third operator mainly competes with the second operator not the first. This is the trend in other markets so I think the challenge will be more to our competitor than to us,’ said Julfar. During the recent GITEX trade show in Dubai, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) director general Mohammed Al Ghanim said that the introduction of a third operator in the UAE was inevitable, although he added that it was too early to discuss dates. Du launched its mobile services in February this year, ending Etisalat’s 30-year monopoly on telecom service provision in the UAE. It also recently launched fixed line services. du currently has 850,000 mobile subscribers having signed up on average 4,000 new customers a day since it launched. As recently reported in Comms Update, Etisalat has over six million users.

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