Viettel to complete EVN Telecom deal by end-March

10 Jan 2012

State-owned utility company Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) expects that the transfer of its telecom unit to military-run operator Viettel will be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2012, VnExpress reports EVN’s general director Pham Le Thanh as saying. EVN Telecom generated turnover of around VND2.43 trillion (USD114 million) in 2011, just 62.7% of its target for the year, amid fierce competition in the market that led to a sharp decline in voice telephony rates. As previously reported by CommsUpdate, last month the government approved the transfer of indebted EVN Telecom to Viettel from 1 January 2012. 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 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, Viettel Telecom