Etisalat seeks cut in federal royalty fee

8 Apr 2010

UAE-based telecoms operator Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has asked the government to reduce the concession deducted from its annual profits, Emirates Business reports. Etisalat currently pays an annual federal royalty of 50% of its yearly net profit, which totalled AED8.836 million (USD2.4 billion) in 2009 after federal royalty, an increase of 16% over the previous year. The operator’s CEO, Salem Al Sharhan, said that the request comes from not only Etisalat’s shareholders, but also the corporation itself, noting: ‘We seek reduction rather than cancellation. And the government strongly understands our demand.’ According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Etisalat is the UAE’s largest telecoms operator by subscribers; at the end of 2009 the company claimed a mobile customer base of 7.74 million, as well as 1.31 million fixed telephony users and over 600,000 broadband subscribers.

United Arab Emirates, Etisalat UAE