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Telenor Myanmar sale reported to include USD100m in funds

2 Mar 2022

The sale of Norwegian telco Telenor Group’s Myanmar division will reportedly see USD100 million in retained earnings transferred to the company’s new owners, Reuters writes, citing three people with knowledge of the terms of the deal. The group agreed to sell Telenor Myanmar to Lebanese investment firm M1 Group for USD105 million in July 2021, following the military takeover of Myanmar in February that year. Of that total, USD55 million would be paid over five years. The USD100 million in retained earnings are held at a Myanmar bank, the sources claimed.

Despite mounting criticism regarding the move, Telenor explained that the conflict between local and international laws, as well as its concerns regarding employee safety, meant that its continued ownership was impossible. Nevertheless, the junta was reluctant to approve the transaction as agreed with M1 but was willing to accept the transfer of the company to M1 and a local partner. The junta is reported to have granted permission for the sale of Telenor Myanmar to M1 and Myanmar conglomerate Shwe Byain Phyu (SBP) – which is said to have ties to the Burmese military. Telenor has not confirmed whether it will accept the terms of the altered transaction, however, noting in a statement that it had received a letter from Myanmar’s Post and Telecommunications Department (PTD) regarding the regulatory approval but adding that there was a final step before approval.

Myanmar, Atom Myanmar (formerly Telenor), M1 Group (Lebanon), Telenor Group

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