ABU DHABI, (Reuters) – Emirates Telecommunications Corp (Etisalat) said on Tuesday that its planned Middle East acquisition will be in Iraq and that it expected “very positive” results for the third quarter.
“It is Iraq but it is not yet finalised. We will shortly announce it,” Etisalat Chairman Mohammed Omran told Reuters on the sidelines of a news conference, declining to give details.
An Etisalat official told Reuters last month that the firm was in final-stage talks to buy a majority stake worth up to $1 billion in a Middle East telecoms operator this year but did not announce the country.
Etisalat has been expanding aggressively abroad, snapping up assets in countries such as Pakistan, Egypt and India. It operates in 16 countries.
Mobile penetration in the United Arab Emirates, which has a population of 4.5 million people, exceeds 150 percent. Du telecom broke Etisalat’s monopoly when it started operations in February 2007.
Omran said that the global financial crisis had not impacted Etisalat and the company expected to post positive third quarter results shortly.
“Etisalat will shortly announce its third quarter results. Our results are very positive,” he said declining to elaborate due to stock market regulations.
“Definitely the international financial crisis is having impact worldwide. But it is too early to say……about positive or negative impact. Etisalat will continue to do well.”