Ethiopian government postpones sale of stake in Ethio Telecom

07 April 2022

Ethiopia decided to postpone the planned partial privatisation of state-owned telecoms firm Ethio Telecom because of the prevailing economic environment domestically and globally.

The government had launched a tendering process in June for a proposed sale of a 40% stake in the state-owned carrier to private investors, part of the government’s broader plan to open up the economy to foreign investment.

“Given the recent developments and fast-moving macroeconomic changes, both globally and from a country perspective, the government of Ethiopia has chosen to postpone the privatisation process,” the finance ministry said in a statement. “The Government believes that taking time to accommodate the improved macroeconomic situation as well as continually improving the financial performance of Ethio Telecom will result in better value for all the parties involved.”

The ministry said it was committed to following through with the privatisation and would at a later date contact those who had expressed interest in its Request for Proposals.

In December 2021, the industry regulator Ethiopian Communication Authority (ECA, said it had also suspended a tender process for a second telecommunications licence, which it said it would relaunch in the “near future”.