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UAE: Telecom Infrastructure Sharing To Be Phased In This Year

23/02/2015 by Andrew Shafer


News that consumers will soon be able to choose between du and Etisalat for their home internet and landline provider will be much welcomed by end users, but analysts say the move will impact on the operators' profits.

As regional newspaper The National reports, du's chief executive Osman Sultan said the infrastructure-sharing agreement will come into effect this year.

The UAE's Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has been trying to leverage the move since 2009, but the process has been delayed for years, mainly due to technological challenges.

However, Paul Black, director of telecoms at IDC Middle East, Turkey and Africa, says that while it is ultimately good news for the sector, du and Etisalat may have to look to other areas to fill the resulting revenue hit.

He explained: "The UAE is becoming more competitive and both operators are looking at changing strategies to enhance experience and add more value to their delivered services.

"This will naturally eat away at profit. Couple this with an increase in royalties [the fee that both du and Etisalat pay to the UAE government]."

Customers would be forgiven for being suspicious of how the new process is going to work, after a significant number of mobile users found problems with the new mobile number portability rules introduced in December 2013.

This time, however, the TRA is expected to play a more active role in ensuring high levels of customer services are adhered to.


UAE, Telecom, Technology, Etisalat group, Du

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