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Ethiopia Floats RFP for Partial Privatization of Ethio Telecom

ADDIS ABABA – The Ministry of Finance has issued a Request for Proposal or RFP for the Partial Privatization of Ethio-telecom today.

The tender aims to sell a 40% stake in the telco to a single investor. The government retains 55% of the company while 5% will be offered to local investors.

The peace deal ending the conflict in northern Ethiopia propelled authorities to restart the tendering process last November with a call for expression of interest.

Today, the Ministry of Finance issued the RFP and expects the sector in general and Ethio Telecom in particular to attract the interest of global telecom firms.

Ethiopia, with a fast-growing economy and a private sector coupled with a young population, “offers valuable growth opportunities,” the Ministry noted.

Also, Ethio Telecom with “robust infrastructure coupled with its strong financial performance will offer a significant competitive advantage to any investor”, it said.

“To this end, the Government of Ethiopia has released a Request for Proposal (“RFP”) for the Partial Privatization to invite proposals from interested parties,” the Ministry said.

It further stated that the RFP is open to all interested parties, and not limited to companies that have already submitted an expression of interest. A prospective buyer is also expected to add value to Ethio Telecom by bringing in best practices including next-generation technological capabilities.

The latest move to partially sell off Ethio Telecom is a part of the government’s plan to further liberalize the economy.

The country’s first private telecom service provider,  Safaricom Ethiopia Plc, started operations last year after a consortium of six foreign companies won the bid offering $850 million, in May 2021.

Ethio Telecom generated 61.3 billion Birr in revenue in the first half of the current 2022/231 Ethiopian fiscal year. It has 66.59 million subscribers, covering more than half the population.

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