Afghanistan to auction mobile phone licences, by Elizabeth Judge

Tuesday, May 3, 2005

War-ravaged Afghanistan has become the latest frontier for mobile phone companies looking for unsaturated markets. The country, which is seeking to rebuild itself after the US invasion, is to auction off two mobile phone licences based on the GSM (global system for mobile communications) standard used in Europe.
The licences are expected to go for millions of pounds each. But the Government hopes that the auction, which will take place during the next two months, will also raise up to $200 million (?135 million) in foreign investment.
The auction should also lead to the creation of thousands of jobs and help to speed up the fledgeling democracy?s recovery, the Government hopes. Last year a GSM licence for Pakistan went for $291 million.
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Source: The Times