Egypt’s National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA) has once again extended the bidding deadline for two geographically-restricted triple-play concessions, Reuters reports. Having announced in December last year that the last date for bids had been pushed back from January 2010 to March, the regulator has now revealed that bids will now not be due until 15 April, after interested bidders once again claimed that they needed more time to formulate offers. Commenting on the latest delay to the process, Amr Badawi, head of the NTRA, said: ‘There was a request (to delay) by at least five of the prospective bidders’ who sought more time to prepare bids.’
In September 2009 the NTRA said it expected to generate investment of up to USD1 billion over a five-year period when it revealed it would offer the two concessions allowing the sale of fixed line voice, high speed broadband and pay-TV services in upscale suburbs outside Cairo which contain between 50 and 5,000 housing units. However, the restrictive nature of the licences appears to have put some potential bidders off, and while Badawi noted that at least 18 companies had purchased bid documents, the regulator has yet to receive a single bid.