MTN, UNITEL eye stake in NetOne

By Staff reporter | 13 Jul 2019 at 20:00hrs
The government has cleared a US$20 million debt to NetOne with revelations the parastatal's partial privatisation is on course as two regional telecommunication firms have submitted bids for minority shareholding.

The clearance of the debt has also seen the parastatal forging ahead with its turnaround strategy which is among other factors being anticipated to increase profitability with MTN of South Africa and UNITEL of Angola being interested in buying a stake in the local company.

The parastatal's chairman Mr James Mutizwa told the ZBC News on the sidelines of its annual general meeting in the capital on Thursday (yesterday) that there's need to focus on the future in terms of strategic and viable business units that have a key focus to unlock shareholder value while transforming the firm from losses to more profits.

"We are happy with what has happened and we anticipate more in the future for the benefit of the entity," he said.

The Minister of  Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services, Honourable Kazembe Kazembe said the government as a shareholder will continue to support the partial privatisation that is among other factors  aimed at reducing dependency on funding from Treasury while focusing on increasing returns to investors or shareholders on the back of some interest by private players.

"There is more that can be done to facilitate transparency and accountability and as government we are doing our best," he said.

Government has instituted parastatal reforms that are aimed at selling minority shareholding in some companies while ensuring that viability is maintained.

In a related development the entity also recorded a US$10.2 million profit for the year ended December 31 2018, a massive turnaround from a US$77 million loss position previously.



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