UAE prepares for competition in telecoms sector

The UAE government has paved the way for the end of Etisalat’s 28-year monopoly in the telecoms sector with the creation of two bodies to oversee competition.

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By  Richard Agnew Published  April 12, 2004

The UAE government has paved the way for the end of Etisalat’s 28-year monopoly in the telecoms sector with the creation of two bodies to oversee competition. A federal decree issued this week by President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nayan detailed plans to set up a three-man Supreme Committee to oversee the UAE’s telecoms sector, including the licensing of new entrants. Another body will monitor services and ensure the sector’s smooth operation, according to the decree, reported by WAM, the UAE’s official news agency. The Minister of State for Financial and Industrial Affairs will head the Supreme Committee and represent the government’s interest in Etisalat. Etisalat declined immediate comment on the move. The 60% government-owned operator was established in 1976 and had a market capitalisation of around Dhs 50 billion at the end of 2003.

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