Egypt - Daily News Egypt has been informed that the Qatar Investment Authority, Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, has reinitiated talks to buy the government’s share in Vodafone Egypt, held through Telecom Egypt, which is approximately 45%.

Insiders privy to the matter noted that the discussions picked up following the conclusion of the Ras El Hekma transaction and the pound’s exchange rate liberalization against the dollar. This comes in conjunction with the government’s approval to sell its complete stake in Telecom Egypt, primarily owned by the Ministry of Finance.

The insiders added that while selling an additional portion of Telecom Egypt will require time, the Ministry of Finance’s intention to divest around 10% remains on track, with completion anticipated by this year’s end or early the following year.

They also mentioned that the ongoing talks about Vodafone’s stake valuation are progressing, with expectations of reaching a consensus in the coming weeks.

Per the Investor Relations booklet from the Ministry of Finance, the ministry aimed to withdraw from its Telecom Egypt stake in Vodafone by late 2023.

The transaction was delayed when the pound’s exchange rate hit roughly 70 pounds against the dollar in the unofficial market, coupled with a dollar shortage, halting the discussions for several months after initially planning to finalize by last year’s end, the insiders revealed.

Previously, Daily News Egypt reported that the Qatar Investment Authority engaged in advanced negotiations in October 2022 to acquire a 20% stake in Vodafone Egypt from Telecom Egypt, although Telecom Egypt reported no official proposals at that time.

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