Somalilandsun: The latest US vs China global tech domination took place in Ethiopia following announcement that the telecom service license worth $850m has been awarded to a US financed consortium
The consortium, which includes Vodafone, Vodacom, Safaricom, Sumitomo Corporation, and the CDC Group, won the bid offering $850 million, two million dollars more than the second-highest bidder, the office of the prime minister said in a statement.
Kenya’s Safaricom with geographical proximity is not only lead in the $850 licence but owns 56% stake in the U.S.-backed consortium.
The losing bidder, in the closely watched telecommunications auction in Ethiopia was Chinese funded South Africa’s MTN Group Ltd this handing Washington a victory in its push to challenge Beijing’s economic influence around the world.
In the Saturday statement PM Abiy Ahmed said the East African country tapped a group of telecommunications companies led by the U.K.’s Vodafone Group PLC to build a nationwide, 5G-capable wireless network. The group had won financial backing for the multibillion-dollar project from a newly created U.S. foreign-aid agency.
The agency offers low-interest loans, but the financing comes with a condition: The money won’t be used to buy telecom equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies Co. and ZTE Corp . Washington considers both a spying threat, an accusation the companies deny.
“With over USD 8 billion total investment, this will be the single largest FDI [foreign direct investment] into Ethiopia to date. Our desire to take Ethiopia fully digital is on track. I would like to thank all that have taken part in this and for pulling off a very transparent and effective process!” Abiy added.