Government considering Telecom Egypt stake sale

9 Mar 2010

The Egyptian government is believed to be considering the sale of a portion of its 80% stake in fixed line incumbent Telecom Egypt (TE), Reuters reports. A final decision has yet to be reached on such a divestment, but commenting on the development, Tarek Kamel, Egypt’s communications minister, said: ‘When I was asked a question on whether it was possible to put an additional stake from Telecom Egypt on the stock exchange in the future, my response was yes, dependent on ongoing studies with experts and consultancies.’ No timeframe for a final decision on a stake sale has been suggested, and Mr Kamel also noted that any such action would require approval by the cabinet. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, the government holds an 80% stake in TE, having sold a 20% tranche in December 2005.

Alongside the revelation about the possible stake sale, Mr Kamel also announced that the state could consider offering a fourth mobile licence, noting: ‘It is a possibilty in the future but it would depend on further studies on market dynamics and the added value of such an act.’ TE managing director Tarekt Tantawy subsequently told local newspaper Al-Alam Al-Youm that his telco would look to bid were such a concession put up for grabs.