Vodafone to pump 9bn EGP in new investments into Egypt
Sign for a Vodafone store - AFP/Carl Court
By AHMED ABU SHADY

CAIRO: In a move to boost investment in Egypt, Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab met on Monday with Vodafone International representatives to discuss 9 billion EGP in new investments to create 3,000 new job opportunities in Egypt until 2017, according to the Cabinet’s website.

Egypt’s Minister of Communication and Information Technology (CIT), British Ambassador in Cairo James Watt, and a number of international figures attended the meeting, according to the statement.

During the meeting, the Vodafone International delegation expressed their willingness to boost investment in Egypt, for up to 30 billion EGP, and develop the communication and technology sector, it said.

The CIT minister previously met with Vodafone representatives in mid-April, to discuss existing problems in the communication sector along with its scheduled investments in Egypt. Vodafone‘s relationship with Egypt has been shaky of late since the ministry announced the launching of a unified license for telecommunication, leading Vodafoneto threaten international arbitration.

The unified license agreement would permit the three mobile operators in Egypt – Mobinil, Etisalat and Vodafone – use of the landline services and internet in return for allowing the state-owned Telecom Egypt (TE) to run its mobile network on the three networks.

In a step to boost the communication sector, provide job opportunities and improve services, the Ministry of CIT in cooperation with the Ministry of Housing plans to build five smart villages in Egypt, in Aswan, Asyut, Beni Suef, Alexandria and Menoufia, Mubasher reported.

The five smart villages will cost 23 billion EGP, and the ministry has already built the foundation for the Asyut smart village, it reported.

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