A man walks past a billboard for MTN in Nigeria. Image by: Getty Images
MTN, which had a $5.2 billion fine imposed on it by the Nigerian
Communication Commission last week for failing to deregister SIM cards
in its largest market, said it received confirmation from the regulator
that its operating spectrum in the 900 MHz and 1800 MHz frequency bands
had been renewed.
MTN's operating spectrum and its digital mobile
license were issued in 2001, and both were due to expire in February
2016. Both have now been extended to 31 August 2021, the firm said.
view this extension as a demonstration of confidence in MTN's capacity
to continue to provide ground-breaking and innovative services to its
customers," MTN's corporate affairs executive Akinwale Goodluck, said in
a separate statement.
Shares in MTN, which earns 37 percent of
its revenue from Nigeria, have dropped 25 percent since the fine was
announced last week, and South Africa's bourse on Monday suspended
trading in its stock for a few hours.
The firm's shares recovered somewhat in early trade on the bourse, advancing 0.9 percent to 149.50 rand by 0728 GMT.
company's largest shareholder, South Africa's Public Investment
Corporation, said it was concerned about MTN's alleged non-compliance
with telecommunications regulations of that country and the allegations
that MTN's management did not immediately disclose material information
to the market.