Ethiopia has opened a tendering process to sell a 40% stake in state-owned carrier Ethio Telecom to private investors, as part of the government’s broader goal to open up the horn of Africa country’s economy.
Ethiopia is aiming to license private operators to compete with Ethio Telecom as part of a broader opening up of the sector.
The first commercial operator license was awarded last month to a consortium led by Kenya’s Safaricom Vodafone and Japan’s Sumitomo.
However, the 40 percent would be sold as a single investment to a single investor, according to Brook Taye, senior advisor at the finance ministry.
Zinabu Yirga, Deputy Director of the Public Enterprises Holding and Administration Agency, told a press conference in Addis Ababa that interested investors can now submit so-called expressions of interest (EOI), the first of a number of processes that would lead to the selection of a winning bidder.
“The government wants state-owned industries to be competitive and productive,” Zinabu explained, explaining why the government is selling a portion of Ethio Telecom to private companies.