The government of Djibouti has approved a draft law outlining the terms and conditions for the legal sale of a partial stake in the country’s state-owned fixed and mobile operator Djibouti Telecom to a ‘first-rate strategic partner’. In a statement, the government stated that opening up the PTO’s share capital is a sign of its determination ‘to implement a proactive policy to modernise the country’s economy, increase global competitiveness, and optimise the governance and management of state-owned enterprises (SOE)’. The government will now seek to appoint international advisors to oversee the process which is expected to go ahead later in the year.
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, last month Djibouti set a six-week deadline for bidders to express an interest in purchasing a 40% stake in the country’s incumbent fixed and mobile operator. In documents published at the time, the government set a deadline of 16 September 2021 for expressions of interest (EoI), but also warned would-be suitors that it is not averse to introducing competition in the near future. In the statement it confirmed: ‘The state of Djibouti does not consider the monopoly as an intangible dogma … In the context of a development that has been experienced by the vast majority of African and emerging countries, the company must prepare to face competition from new entrants and the liberalisation of the sector, particularly in the cell phone sector.’