Essar wins network licence in Uganda


A unit of India's Essar Group has won a licence in Uganda to build a $200 million cellular phone network. Unlisted Essar Teleholdings, which had got a similar licence in Kenya last year, will own 90% of the venture, the paper said, quoting a group official.

"We have paid $3 million for frequency charges to the Uganda Communication Commission and will launch the service in August in a joint venture with Kenyan Telecom Uganda, a local telecom company," it quoted Srinivasa Iyengar, MD of Essar Telecom Kenya, as saying.

Uganda has six cellular phone operators, of which South Africa's MTN Group is the market leader with a 45% share, the paper said. Essar Teleholdings has also decided to bid for licences in Tanzania, Congo and Cameroon, the paper said.