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“The telecom bid can be cancelled,” 

Brook Taye (PhD), senior advisor to Ethiopia’s Ministry of Finance

The ministry, which is currently evaluating capital offered by two telecom operators who participated in an international bid Ethiopia floated months back to give license for two operators, is expected to announce the winner in two weeks maximum.

However, “we can cancel the bid totally, pick one of the two bidders, or award both of them,” said Brook, in an interview with EBR on May 6, 2021. 

Despite 12 telecom companies showing interest when the bid was floated months back, only two of them submitted bid documents and passed the technical and capital evaluations preliminary. China-backed MTN and US-backed consortium led by Vodafone are the final viable bidders on the table of the ministry of finance, which expects a lump of revenue from the 40pct telecom liberalization. Most of the participants failed a requirement of the bid which states viable participants must have more than 30 million mobile subscribers. 

“Technological capacity of the two final bidders is unquestionable. We are evaluating them from capital offer perspective,” said Brook. “the bid process is crystal clear; despite allegations it was opaque.”

Ashenafi Endale


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