Telecel submits proposals to comply with indigenisation rules

21 Jun 2010

Telecel Globe, a part of Egyptian group Orascom Telecom, has submitted its proposals to reduce its 60% shareholding in cellco Telecel Zimbabwe to 49% to comply with the country’s indigenisation regulations. A letter containing the proposals was submitted to Transport, Communication & Infrastructure Development Minister Nicholas Goche and Indigenisation & Empowerment Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, Zimbabwean Sunday newspaper The Standard reports. Telecel Globe said in a statement that the letter was approved by both of the GSM operator’s shareholders, holding company Telecel International and the local Empowerment Corporation. The statement added that ‘there are no other shareholders in Telecel Zimbabwe and there never have been any others, although some people seem intent on misrepresenting themselves as being shareholders,’ referring to various claims on the company’s future ownership rights, mostly from individuals associated with groups that make up the collective Empowerment Corporation stake. Telecel International, as a foreign shareholder, was obliged, both in terms of the Indigenisation Act and the licence that regulator POTRAZ issued to Telecel Zimbabwe in 2002, to reduce its shareholding from 60% to 49%. ‘Section 12.1.3 of the licence states that the licensee shall within five years from the date of signing of the licence ensure that the foreign ownership is reduced to 49%,’ the statement said, whilst clarifying that ‘It has not been possible, due to hyperinflation, to reduce shareholding within the stipulated period through the sale of shares, as nobody in Zimbabwe was able at the time to guarantee international euro or United States dollar loans.’

Zimbabwe, Global Telecom Holding (GTH, formerly OTH), Telecel Zimbabwe