ADDIS ABABA – State Minister of Finance, Eyob Tekalign, held discussion with Anwar Soussa, managing director of Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia Plc, on Friday.
The meeting comes almost 30 days after the former chairperson of Vodafone’s African mobile money services Vodacash (M-PESA) officially became Managing Director of the new telecom company.
The company owned by Safaricom-led consortium, Global Partnership for Ethiopia, was formed to operate telecom services in the east african nation and was awarded the licence to do so in May 2021.
Eyob and Soussa discussed the progress of the project by consortium and the next steps in the implementation, said the Ministry of Finance.
Safaricom Ethiopia Plc’s entrance as the second telecom operator in Ethiopia is expected to spur massive investment in the telecommunications sector as well as to bring increased competition to the market, leading to improvements in service quality, coverage, and innovation.
In the discussion, Eyob said the Government of Ethiopia has opened its market to private-sector competition, and foreign investment as part of its homegrown agenda.
This move is expected to bring a higher quality of service and more choice for consumers, he said, adding that these reforms will lay the foundations for Ethiopia’s future digital transformation.
Soussa, on his part, expressed his gratitude to Eyob and the government of Ethiopia for having given Safaricom Ethiopia PLC the opportunity to serve the people of Ethiopia and for their strong support as the telecommunications company prepares to launch operations.
The company is expected to start rolling out telephony services from 2022 and put a low Earth orbit satellite in place that will provide nationwide 4G coverage by 2023. The consortium forecasts it will create up to 1.5 million new jobs, help millions of businesses and bring in investment of $8.5 billion over the next decade.