Kuwait sets Nov 18 mobile deadline

A 26% stake in country's third mobile firm will go to highest offer in single bidding round.

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By  Reuters Published  September 23, 2007

Kuwait has invited companies to submit bids for a 26% stake in the oil producer's third mobile phone firm by Nov. 18, state-owned Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) said on Sunday.

KIA, which had delayed the deadline twice, said in a statement on its Web site it would hold a single bidding round, with the stake going to the highest bidder. There would not be a pre-qualification process, it said.

Foreign telecom firms and listed local companies operating in other sectors are allowed to bid for the minority stake.

The new operator would compete with Mobile Telecommunications Co. (Zain) and National Mobile Telecommunications Co. (Wataniya) in the country of about 3 million people.

The government will offer 50% of the third operator in a public offering and retain 24 percent.

Companies including Emirates Telecommunications Corp (Etisalat) have expressed an interest in bidding for the stake.

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