On October 14, 2013, VimpelCom Ltd.’s subsidiary, Global Telecom Holding S.A.E. (“GTH”), issued English and Arabic versions of its press release announcing that its Algerian subsidiary Orascom Telecom Algerie (“OTA”) has been awarded one of the three provisional 3G licenses offered in Algeria. The English version of GTH’s press release is included as Exhibit 99.1 to this Report of Foreign Private Issuer on Form 6-K (this “Report”).
Cairo/London, October 14, 2013: Global Telecom Holding S.A.E. (“Global Telecom” or “GTH”) announces that its Algerian subsidiary Orascom Telecom Algerie (“OTA”) has been awarded one of the three provisional 3G licenses offered in Algeria, at a formal ceremony today. Final licenses with the relevant coverage obligations are expected to be granted after payment of fees, satisfaction of the conditions indicated in the tender documents and receipt of clearances and approvals from various governmental authorities. The 3G license will cost DZD 3 billion (approximately USD 40 million) and will be valid for 15 years, after which successive renewals will be in five year fixed terms.
OTA received an exceptional approval from the Bank of Algeria allowing OTA to make foreign payments to acquire equipment exclusively dedicated to 3G technologies. This exception is a conditioned derogation to the current ban on foreign payments.
The GTH press release in this Report contains “forward-looking statements”, as the phrase is defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, relating the grant of a 3G license to OTA. These forward-looking statements are based on the best assessment of management. The actual outcome may differ materially from these statements and there can be no assurance that OTA will receive a final 3G license, that OTA will be able to satisfy all of the license conditions or that OTA will be able to acquire 3G equipment and rollout 3G services in a timely manner or at all. Certain factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in any forward-looking statements include the risk factors described in VimpelCom Ltd.’s Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2012 and other public filings made by VimpelCom Ltd. with the SEC, which risk factors are incorporated herein by reference. VimpelCom Ltd. disclaims any obligation to update developments of these risk factors or to announce publicly any revision to any of the forward-looking statements contained in this Report, or to make corrections to reflect future events or developments.
About Global Telecom Holding:
Global Telecom (“GTH”) is a leading international telecommunications company operating GSM networks in high growth markets in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, having a total population under license of approximately 459 million with an average mobile telephony penetration of approximately 53% as of June 30, 2013. Global Telecom operates GSM networks in Algeria (“Djezzy”), Pakistan (“Mobilink”) and Bangladesh (“banglalink”) and has an indirect equity shareholding in Globalive Wireless Canada (“WIND Mobile”). In addition it has an indirect equity ownership in Telecel Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe) and, through its subsidiary Telecel Globe, GTH also operates in Burundi and the Central African Republic. Global Telecom reached over 86 million subscribers as of June 30, 2013.
Global Telecom is traded on the Egyptian Exchange under the symbol “GTHE.CA”, and on the London Stock Exchange its GDSs are traded under the symbol “GLTD:LI”.