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The National Communications & Media Commission (NCMC), the independent telecoms and media regulator, has invited applications for prequalification for up to four new mobile licences. The launch came after the licences of the existing three foreign operators, consortiums led by Egypt’s Orascom Telecom and MTC and Wataniya Telecom, both of Kuwait, were extended in December until 30 June (MEED 2:12:05). Under the proposed schedule, interested companies must register their interest and request applications from the NCMC’s financial adviser PricewaterhouseCoopers, by 30 March. Proposals will be submitted by 10 April. The regulator will then issue a preferred shortlist and an official tender. An award is expected by the third quarter.