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Airtel to pay $26 million to Tanzania government and cancel debt to settle dispute

June 11, 2019
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According to the Tanzanian government, Bharti Airtel has agreed to pay $26 million over five years and cancel $407 million debt owed to it by Airtel Tanzania to settle a dispute of ownership over Airtel Tanzania.

The dispute over the ownership of Airtel Tanzania began in 2017 when the Tanzania government claimed that the operator was fully owned by state-run Tanzania Telecommunications Company Limited (TTCL).

As per the government, TTCL had been cheated out of its shares through an irregular privatisation process. However, Bharti Airtel rejected the claim stating that it had complied with regulatory approvals when it acquired a 60 per cent stake in the firm.

The dispute reached a conclusion, after rounds of negotiation in January 2019 when Airtel agreed to increase the government’s stake in Airtel Tanzania from 40 per cent to 49 per cent.

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