India cancels Etisalat licence

02 February 2012

Supreme Court of India rules against licensees

Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) has lost its mobile licence in India.

The Supreme Court of India cancelled all 122 of spectrum licences granted in 2008 to eight operators, including Swan, Etisalat’s subsidiary in the country. The public interest litigation case was filed after the former telecommunications minister Andimuthu Raja undersold the second-generation (2G) licences, losing the country almost $40bn.  

In a statement issued to the press, Etisalat says it will work closely with Swan’s management to “understand the judgment, [and] its ramifications on the operations of Swan”.

“The Supreme Court decision relates to events that occurred in January 2008, well before December 2008 when Etisalat invested in Swan,” the company adds in the statement. “Etisalat has no knowledge of what occurred in the licence application process for Swan.”

The court has also imposed a fine on all licensees who sold equity to foreign investors after issuance of the licences.

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