Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Bharti Airtel to raise $3bn ahead of AGR payment

By Chris Kelly, Total Telecom
Wednesday 04 December 19

Between them, India's mobile network operators owe the Indian government a total of $13 billion, following a Supreme Court ruling over the way they calculate their adjusted gross revenues

India's third largest mobile network operator, Bharti Airtel, has announced plans to raise over $3 billion, as it looks to begin making payment of outstanding dues which it owes to the Indian government…

India's third largest mobile network operator, Bharti Airtel, has announced plans to raise over $3 billion, as it looks to begin making payment of outstanding dues which it owes to the Indian government.

A report from Reuters claimed that Bharti Airtel intends to raise $1 billion via bonds and debentures, with a further $2 billion being raised through qualified institutional placement.  

India's telcos have been hit by a Supreme Court decision, ordering them to pay outstanding dues to the government of around $13 billion. Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea are expected to be liable for the vast majority of that amount.

All three of India's nationwide mobile network operators have called on the Indian government to provide relief packages and to allow them to spread the payments over an extended period. However, those pleas appear to have fallen on deaf ears, as the country's Department of Telecoms wrote to operators requesting that payment be made within three months – effectively giving a payment deadline of mid-January 2020.

Also in the news

Indian regulator considers review of controversial interconnect charge

Vodafone Idea quashes rumours of Indian exit

Reliance to spin off Jio and invest $15bn in future growth

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