The Ethiopian Communications Authority (ECA) has published a Request For Proposals (RFP) for its second new full‐service telecommunications license in Ethiopia,inviting both international and national telecommunications companies to take part in the sealed bidding  process.  


Marking the next phase of the widely heralded liberalisation of Ethiopia’s telecoms market, the second license (License B) is due to be issued in January 2022, introducing a third telecom operator to compete alongside Ethio Telecom and the global partnership for Ethiopia ( Safaricom Telecommunincations Ethiopia PLC ), and help boost the digital trasformation in the country.

Since winning the first lLicense (License A) in June 2021, the Global Partnership for Ethiopia has quickly established its local headquarters in Addis  Ababa and is preparing to launch its services to the Ethiopian people. 

The second license will include Mobile Financial Services and additional spectrum allocation and will have revised pre-qualification criteria to include participation from wide range of international and national telecommunincations operators.

Eng.Balcha Reba, director general of the ECA commented, "The goal of liberalizing our telecoms sector has always been to drive competition and attract greater private sector investement as a key part of Ethiopia's digital transformation.

Following our successful first license issuance earlier this year to one of the world's largest international telecoms consortia, we have continued with our mission and now we want to encourage more telecoms operators, of all sizes to be part of this exciting opportunity."

The ECA is well positioned to deliver a process that is both transparent and fair and continues to manage the license issuance process, which will be taking place in parallel with the partial privatisation of of Ethio Telecom.

This is a separate process due to be concluded before the closing date for the license B bid submission dealline. At the end of the licensing process, there will be three operators with licenses to deliver high-quality telecommunications serivce in Ethiopia: Ethio Telecom, Safaricom Telecommunications Ethiopia and the new license B holder.

Bidders have until December 20, 2021 to respond to the RFP, which includes Investment Considerations. 

The final selection will be announced following a thorough evaluation of the proposals according to the pre‐defined criteria, and the License B  will be granted to the winning applicant, in accordance with the Communications Services Proclamation  of Ethiopia.    

Opening Ethiopia’s telecommunications market to greater competition will maximise the opportunities presented by the digital economy: reliable and  accessible communications for the Ethiopian people leading to improved quality of life, improved connectivity to support rapid economic transformation and growth, job opportunities as a result of having best in class tech, and both local and inward invenstment. 

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