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Vodafone mulls exit from Egyptian operation

Telecom Egypt interested in buying Vodafone's stake in Egyptian telco

Vodafone could be interested in exiting Egypt according to reports.
Vodafone could be interested in exiting Egypt according to reports.

UK mobile operator Vodafone is considering exiting its Egyptian operation Vodafone Egypt, in which it has a 55% stake.

Vodafone discussed the move after it was approached by its partner, Telecom Egypt, which owns a 45% stake in the operation, the Financial Times reported.

The report added that the talks could indicate a change of direction at Vodafone, with the company's CEO Vittorio Colao apparently keen to streamline the company, which is increasingly being weighed down by some of its foreign assets. In May, Vodafone wrote down the value of its Indian business by £2.3bn. 

Vodafone also faces increasing competition in Egypt, where the third mobile operator, Etisalat Misr, is gaining ground. The end of a lengthy dispute between France Telecom and Orascom Telecom over the ownership of ECMS, which trades in Egypt under the name of Mobinil, could also signal increased competition for Vodafone.