MTN to Sell Shares in Syria

Aiming to shrink its presence in the Middle East, telecommunications company MTN Group will sell its 75 percent stake in MTN Syria, reports Al-Souria Net.

MTN Group has set the price for selling its stake in Syria, days after the Bashar al-Assad government-imposed judicial receivership on it.

According to Reuters reporting, the company is still committed to negotiating the sale of its 75 percent stake in Syria, despite placing the company under legal guardianship last week.

A spokeswoman for the company, which is based in South Africa, told Alsouria Net that “MTN Group remains committed to implementing the deal agreed upon with TeleInvest to sell 75 percent of its shares for 65 million dollars.”

MTN International owns about 75 percent of MTN Syria, while its partner, Telinvest, owns the remaining 25 percent of the shares.

Last August, the global company announced its withdrawal from the Syrian market by selling its stake to the Syrian Telinvest Company.

The CEO of the company, Rob Shooter, revealed at the time that “negotiations to sell the company’s shares in Syria have reached an advanced stage,” justifying the conclusion that the company wants to “focus on its strategy in Africa, and shrink its portfolio in the Middle East.”

However, the two companies did not disclose the outcome of the negotiations or the value of the deal before the Assad government announced the imposition of court receivership on the company and appointed Telinvest, which wanted to buy the stake, as a judicial guard.

On Thursday, the Administrative Court (the Fourth Circuit) in Damascus issued a decision, which included imposing judicial receivership on MTN Syria.

According to the court, the decision was due to “prove violations of the obligations imposed on [the company] by the licensing contract, which affected the rights of the public treasury, which has 21.5 percent of total revenues.”

The State Council published the decision, a 13-page document, which included the court ruling in which the two requests for intervention submitted by the General Commission for Taxes and Fees and the Teleinvest Limited Company, were rejected.

 

This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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