Telenor, Ooredoo win Myanmar licenses

Dylan Bushell-Embling
28 Jun 2013
Daily News

The Myanmar government has selected Norway's Telenor and Qatar-based Ooredoo as the winners of two nationwide telecom licenses.

The two operators beat out competition from nine other shortlisted individual or consortium bidders – including SingTel, Bharti Airtel, Axiata and KDDI - to secure the highly-prized licenses.

Ooredoo has announced plans to commence a mobile network rollout once negotiations with the government regarding the final details of the license are complete.

“Myanmar will undoubtedly become a key market for Ooredoo as we build out our network,” Ooredoo chairman Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani said.

Informa Telecoms and Media chief research officer Mark Newman said the awards “cement Telenor and Ooredoo as two of the most ambitious and aggressive investors in the Asian telecoms sector. Both companies have relatively small home markets and have identified Asia as their preferred region for expansion.”

One of Ooredoo's biggest regional assets is Indonesia's Indosat, which operates in a highly-competitive market. The company also owns stakes in Singapore's StarHub and Laotian incumbent fixed and mobile operator LTC.

Telenor for its part has invested heavily in its Indian operations, now currently run by joint venture Telewings, and unlike some international players, remained committed to the market even after the court-ordered cancellation of its 2G licenses in 2012.

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