Pakistani finance minister has said UAE’s Etisalat is expected to soon settle the $799m it owes from a 2006 investment in the country’s former telecom monopoly, Reuters has reported. The UAE’s largest telecoms operator by revenue and subscribers led a consortium that bought a 26% stake in Pakistan Telecommunication Co (PTCL) for $2.6bn, the Abu Dhabi-based firm, which also obtained majority voting rights in PTCL, withheld $799m it owes on the deal, because of Pakistan’s failure to reassign ownership of 3,248 properties to PTCL as per the sale agreement. “The release of funds is expected shortly,” Ishaq Dar, Pakistan’s finance minister, told the news service. The minister ruled out taking punitive action against Etisalat to try to force the company to pay.
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