Apart from Etisalat, Kuwait’s Zain and Saudi Telecom vie for Oman licence.
UAE telecom giant Etisalat Group on Wednesday announced it has submitted a bid for the mobile licence in the Sultanate of Oman.
“The bid is in line with Etisalat Group’s expansion strategy considering the market potential and similarities, footprint proximity to its core market, and likely synergies,” a statement from the company said.
On Tuesday, Kuwait’s Zain Group and Saudi Telecom Co (STC) have also applied to become the third mobile operator in Oman as the country’s regulator looks to award its first licence since 2004, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
Zain announced on the Kuwait bourse on Tuesday that it had submitted an offer to bid for the licence. Rival STC had confirmed its application a day earlier.
The shortlist of qualified applications will be announced on August 14, with the winning bid to be announced on September 4, according to statements from the companies.
Oman’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) said last year that it was inviting bids for what will be the first mobile network operator licence Oman has awarded since Ooredoo Oman, then branded Nawras in Oman, started operations in the country in 2004.
According to Australian analyst Paul Budde there are almost seven million mobile phones in Oman – a country with a population of 4.6 million. “The mobile market in Oman has become saturated with high penetration and many multiple subscriptions,” says Budde in an interview to Global Telecoms Business.