Friday, October 9, 2009

Malawi Cancels Two Cellco Licences

Malawian newspaper the Daily Times reports that doubts have been raised over the likelihood of a third cellco entering the wireless market in the near future, after the government reportedly suspended two licences granted to Lacell of Singapore and the UAE's Expresso Telecommunications.
The report states that the concessions have been put on hold following the discovery that they were not properly permitted by the regulator, Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA).
Furthermore, Global Advanced Integrated Networks (GAIN), which won Malawi's third wireless licence in July 2008, has been given a rollout deadline of December 2009 by MACRA, but the company is currently focused on a legal wrangle among its shareholders, leading many to doubt whether it will be able to launch services in time.
At present, the Malawian mobile market is home to two operators, market leader Zain Malawi, which had a market share of 68% at 30 June 2009, followed by rival Telekom Networks Malawi with 32%.

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