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Telecom | Bharti-MTN deal: DoT yet asking more details

Telecom | Bharti-MTN deal: DoT yet asking more details

New Delhi: The department of telecom, or DoT, is reluctant to seek more details from Bharti Airtel Ltd at this juncture on its proposed merger deal with South African telecom firm MTN Group Ltd.

As reported by Mint on 28 May, the finance ministry wrote to DoT, seeking specific content of the proposed transaction as well as the department’s advice on the matter.

“Once the deal has been firmed up, then only we can ask for more details on the deal. At present, only discussions are on between the two parties," said a DoT official who didn’t want to be named. “They are bound to come to us with details once the deal has been done."

The finance ministry had said that, given the size of the deal, it wanted to be kept updated on the situation. In its letter to DoT, the ministry also referred to the likelihood of the transaction affecting the foreign investment limit in Bharti, as well as specific telecom sector regulations. “The deal could present a change in management and thus relevant approvals inter-alia from FIPB (Foreign Investment Promotion Board) would also be required," it said.

A finance ministry official, who didn’t want to be named, said the ministry is yet to receive any reply from the DoT.

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