Viettel-EVN Telecom deal to receive green light?

6 Dec 2011

According to a report by Saigon GP Daily, which cites an unnamed source from the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC), the Vietnamese government has agreed in principle that military-run operator Viettel Corporation can take over struggling rival EVN Telecom. The source reportedly said that a government statement sent to the MIC gives Viettel the go-ahead to acquire EVN Telecom, a unit of state-run utility firm Electricity of Vietnam, as of 1 January 2012. Before that date, the two companies will be required to finalise the details of the takeover. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, Viettel made moves to acquire EVN Telecom in October 2011, shortly after rival Hanoi Telecom Company (HTC) submitted a proposal to the government to purchase the indebted operator’s network infrastructure. Last month HTC criticised Viettel’s proposed acquisition, stating that such a deal would give Viettel more than half of the country’s total 3G frequency resources. This, the company said, would breach the Competition Law and could prevent rival companies from competing effectively. A previous attempt to sell a 49% stake in EVN Telecom to the Corporation for Financing and Promoting Technology (FPT) fell apart earlier this year, after FPT decided to pull out of the deal three months after it was approved by the government.

Vietnam, EVN Telecom, Hanoi Telecom Company (HTC), Viettel Telecom