2 Oct 2007

PNG mobile phone operator warns of international repercussions if licence revoked

8:18 pm on 2 October 2007

The Irish telecommunication company, Digicel, has told the Papua New Guinea Government it risks ruining its international reputation if its mobile licence is taken away.

The government is attempting to have Digicel's licence taken away and the matter is before the court.

The Post Courier newspaper reports Digicel's chair, Denis O'Brien, flew into Port Moresby at the weekend and met with the acting Prime Minister and the Finance Minister to talk about the issue.

The two ministers reportedly said that Digicel's licence, which cost the compnay 17 million US dollars, would not be removed.

Last week, two ministers called for a transfer of the licensing body from an independent institution, the ICCC, to the telecommunications minister.

They also called for Digicel's license to be revoked.

Mr O'Brien says that would be disastrous for the country, because international organisations, including the European Union and the World Bank, are watching events closely.