The Mozambican government has confirmed that it will finish examining bids in the international public tender for the country’s third mobile phone licence this week, reports local daily Noticias. Transport and Communications Minister Paulo Zucula has declared that the winner of the tender will be announced by the first week of November. The bidders’ respective technical proposals have now been evaluated by the National Communications Institute, a process in which the bidders themselves participated. Three out of 22 interested parties have been shortlisted for the licence: TMN (the cellular unit of Portugal Telecom), UNI-Telecom (a joint venture between Angolan cellco Unitel and Mozambique’s Energy Capital) and a Vietnam-backed bidder named Movitel, which is rumoured to be spearheaded by military-run GSM operator Viettel. As at June 2010 the country was home to 5.57 million mobile phone customers, of which mCel boasted the lion’s share: four million subscribers, or 71.9% of the market.
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