CAIRO: State-owned communication giant Telecom Egypt plans to participate with 20 percent in the Arab Egyptian consortium, which will build a submarine international communications cable at a cost of $520 million (almost LE 3 billion). The move comes as part of the Ministry of Communication’s efforts to liberalize international communications services in Egypt.
Akil Bashir, the chairman of Telecom Egypt, said that Telecom Egypt will lead the Egyptian partners in the consortium with a stake of 51 percent. Egyptian partners include EgyNet, Teletech and Raya Holding. They will form a consortium with Saudi investors along with Saudi mobile phone service Mobily.
Bashir said that Telecom Egypt would provide infrastructure support for the first Arab submarine cable for international communication through the company’s landing stations in Suez and Alexandria.
Investments of the first stage of the project amount to nearly $120 million (LE 689 million). Building of the communication cable will attract investments of more than $300 million (LE 1.72 billion) with exports of $500 million (LE 2.87 billion) over a period ranging from five to seven years of operation. Officials estimate that the project will save some $200 million (over LE 1.1 billion) of international calls costs as it will be the first submarine communication cable owned by an Egyptian Arab consortium.