Monday, August 10, 2009

Rwanda to Sell Its 10% Stake in MTN

The government of Rwanda will sell off its 10 per cent stake in Rwanda MTN — a deal that could be the biggest by the state this year.

Officials say the government is set to transact its shares in three of nation’s biggest companies — which include MTN Rwanda, Bralirwa (the country’s sole brewing company) and Sonarwa (the country’s biggest insurance company), by the end of the year.

“It means that the government will trade off its 30 per cent stake in BRALIRWA, its 20 per cent stake in SONARWA and its 10 per cent share of MTN Rwanda,” said Finance Minister James Musoni.

“We are looking for a adviser to help us facilitate the transaction. The adviser will be outsourced in an open tender,” Mr Musoni said.

He told The EastAfrican that all government shares would be floated on the stock exchange — the Rwanda Over-the-Counter Market — by the end of the year.

Rwanda’s capital market was launched in early 2008.

In June this year, the Kenya Commercial Bank crosslisted on the Rwandan bourse.

Officials said that companies like MTN and Bralirwa had earlier expressed interest in issuing corporate bonds.

Bank of Rwanda Governor Francios Kanimba, while presenting the Monetary Policy and Financial Stability Statement last week, said there will be a listing of government shares of the three companies through one consortium.

Sonarwa is a French acronym for Societe Nouvelle d’Assurance du Rwanda.

It was acquired recently by Nigeria’s Industrial and General Insurance Company (35 per cent controlling stake).

Bralirwa (Brasseries et Limonaderies du Rwanda) is 70 per cent owned by the Heineken Group.

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