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Egypt's Mobinil delays 3G till July

Egyptian mobile operator to delay introduction of 3G services by two and a half months.

Egyptian mobile operator Mobinil said it was delaying the introduction of 3G services and payment of a 750 million Egyptian pound ($138 million) instalment on the licence fee by about two and a half months.

In a statement on Thursday it said it needed the delay because the regulatory authorities were late in handing over the frequency band for Mobinil to do the necessary tests before service begins.

Mobinil was meant to receive the frequency band on January 17 but the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) did not say it was available until March 27, it said.
Mobinil has told the NTRA it will consider March 30 to be the start date for the process and that it will pay the instalment two months and 14 days after that date -- on about June 13 -- instead of on April 1.

It will start 3G services to subscribers three months and 13 days after March 30 -- on about July 14 -- instead of on May 1, it added.

NTRA officials were not available to comment.
The largest shareholders in Mobinil, which is also known as Egyptian Company for Mobile Services, are France Telecom and Orascom Telecom.

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