Telecom Egypt (TE), the country’s fixed line incumbent, has revealed that it has inked a deal with mobile network operator Etisalat Misr, Ahram Online reports. According to the local news source, which cites a statement made by TE to the Egyptian Stock Exchange, under the terms of the EGP600 million (USD84.5 million) contract Etisalat will be able to make use of parts of TE’s fixed line infrastructure in what has been described as a ‘domestic transmission leased lines agreement’, with a more holistic interconnection agreement between the two parties said to be pending. For its part, Etisalat was cited as saying that it considered ‘the settlement of all outstanding issues between TE and Etisalat Misr, including the current financial disputes, as well as the signing of a fair interconnection agreement, one of the most important pre-requisites for awarding TE a new mobile license in Egypt’.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in May 2013 it was revealed that alongside confirming plans to allow TE to offer mobile voice services, the Egyptian government was also looking at permitting the country’s cellcos –MobiNil, Vodafone Egypt and Etisalat Misr – to offer fixed line voice services using the incumbent’s infrastructure. With the National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (NTRA) at that date having assigned a German company to formulate fees for the new concessions, earlier this month TE’s chief executive revealed that the telco was ‘in talks’ with mobile operators about potential wholesale deals which would allow it to launch as a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO).