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Tue 11 Oct 2011 10:49 AM

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UAE's Etisalat says no plans for foreign acquisitions

Chairman says telco has no plans to sell overseas operations amid India scandal

UAE's Etisalat says no plans for foreign acquisitions
Etisalats Mohammad Omran said the telco may bid for Iraqs fourth mobile license

Etisalat has no immediate plans for foreign acquisitions,
although it recently scrapped a bid to buy a rival in Kuwait, the United Arab
Emirates telecoms operator's chairman said on Monday.

The former monopoly is active in 18 countries, yet about
three-quarters of its revenues in the first half of 2011 came from domestic

"At this stage we are not looking at any
acquisitions," said Etisalat chairman Mohammad Omran, speaking on the
sidelines of a conference, adding Etisalat had yet to decide on whether to bid
for Iraq's fourth mobile license, which is expected to be auctioned by year-end.

The Abu Dhabi-based firm scrapped a $12bn takeover bid for its
Kuwaiti rival Zain in March.

"I don't see it at this stage", said Omran when
asked if the company would revive its interest in Zain.

He added that the firm was not considering selling any of
its foreign operations or to issue debt.

"We are comfortable with our assets," he said,
declining to comment on Etisalat's troubled India unit.

India's DB Group is Etisalat's partner in the Indian mobile
joint venture, Etisalat DB, which has been embroiled in a massive
telecommunications scandal.

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