French telecoms giant Orange Group has submitted an expression of interest (EoI) to participate in the ongoing partial privatisation of Ethio Telecom, Reuters reports, following comments made by an Ethiopian official on social media. Henok Teferra Shawl, Ethiopia’s ambassador to France, Spain, Portugal, Holy See & Monaco, was cited as confirming via Twitter that Orange had ‘formally submitted interest to participate in the partial privatisation of [Ethio Telecom]’.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, last month Ethiopia’s Ministry of Finance (MoF) and the Public Enterprises Holding and Administration Agency (PEHAA) announced the completion of a ‘key milestone’ in the partial privatisation of Ethio Telecom. At that date, the government bodies confirmed that, as part of a privatisation process that began in 2018, the state was ready to release an EoI for the sale of a 40% stake in Ethio Telecom. With the issuance of the EoI having been scheduled for 15 June, international investors were reportedly to be given until 14 July to confirm interest in acquiring the stake. Meanwhile, following the issuance of the EoI, a Request for Proposal (RFP) is expected to follow, with Ethiopian authorities having previously said the timeline for this will be ‘communicated in due course, with the aim of completing the transaction in an efficient and streamlined manner’.