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French Version

Etisalat reports $765 million in net profits for first 6 months

Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (Etisalat) reported Tuesday a net profit of Dh2.813 billion ($765 million) after royalty payments for the first six months of 2006, a growth of 33 percent over the corresponding period in 2005.

Etisalat's board of directors also declared an interim dividend at the rate of 25 percent on the par value of each share.

Distribution of dividends will commence from July 26, and will be paid to all shareholders registered in the Shareholders Register at the close of day on July 18, 2006.

"At Etisalat, we are extremely proud of the results we have achieved, and it is testament to the success we have experienced both locally and internationally," said Mohammad al-Qamzi, CEO of Etisalat. "Our results for the first half of 2006 place us firmly on track to be among the top 20 telecom operators in the world."

Etisalat mobile serves over 4.995 million customers in the UAE. This represents a penetration of over 100 percent, and is among the highest in the world.

Fixed-line subscribers have increased to exceed 1.266 million, and Internet subscribers now exceed 578,000.

These results come at a time when Etisalat is implementing an ambitious strategy to enter lucrative markets in Asia, Africa and Europe, Qamzi said. The most recent entry was into Egypt, where Etisalat won the license to operate the third GSM network. This license gives the firm entry into one of the largest markets in the region, he added.

Beirut,24July2006
Redaction
The Daily Star


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