15 Jul 2011
The United Arab Emirates’ incumbent telecoms operator Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Export-Import Bank of China and Huawei International. The agreement aims to enhance the strategic cooperation between the three parties in the telecoms sector. Under the deal, Chinese equipment vendor Huawei will work with Etisalat on network management and the provision of new services and technologies across Etisalat’s domestic and international operations. No financial details of the agreement have been announced. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database states that Etisalat is the UAE’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, with a total of 7.43 million at 31 March 2011, corresponding to a market share of 61.7%. The operator also had an estimated 764,000 broadband customers at the same date, as well as 1.24 million fixed line users at the end of 2010. Etisalat’s sole rival is Du, which was awarded the country’s second full telecoms licence in February 2006.