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Ramallah Reuters: The Deputy Chairman of PALTEL Group Dr. Abdul Malik Al- Jaber said that the Board of Directors of the company had postponed its emergency meeting which was scheduled in Amman yesterday, to discuss the entry of ZAIN as strategic partner in the company.
Al-Jaber said "The meeting was postponed after a telephone conversation between the chairman of the Board of Directors Mr. Sabih Al-Masri and the Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad, and subsequently there was a decision to postpone the meeting to March 21". He added "We expect that there will be positive developments this week, and we are waiting the Council of Ministers meeting tomorrow, following this meeting results we will consider the final decision regarding ZAIN deal".
It was suggested by the Minister of Communications Kamal Hassouna to the possibility of taking on the government its decision regarding to the transaction of ZAIN, which requires the approval of the Palestinian Authority to complete.
The merger transaction had been announced by the end of last January without revealing details.
Hassouna said regarding the possibility of the government decision "there could be a decision after the council of ministers meeting on Monday (tomorrow). We are talking about a big company...The biggest in Palestine … talking must be in millions and not in simple sums, and we will be fair with all parties, with the company and the public... We look forward to lower prices and an outstanding service".
Hassuna as the chief of the committee set up by the government to study the terms of the transaction, rejected the allegations of the delay in responding to this deal, and said "There are negotiations ... there is no delay from the side of the ministry, and we are ready at any time to complete the subject, we encourage investment and foreign investment .. There is no problem".
Hassouna said "there is no problem with the entrance of ZAIN... There are some requirements from the company (PALTEL) for data connection and conventions regarding some fees... There are some agreed grounds in accordance of the law of the ministry".
He added: "We have proposed if they wanted to extend the license for another 15 years, they have also to pay fees as Wataniya Company had paid".
According to Al- Jaber, the company wants in case of proposal agreement to make payment installments in the same way paid by Wataniya Company.
Al-Jaber said: "If the government sent us any new proposals or any response to our letter in the fifth of March, we are ready to respond to it".
The Palestinian Telecommunication Group expected to obtain the consent of the Palestinian Authority on the beginning of this March, but returned and canceled the date set for an irregular meeting of the Assembly awaiting of the Authority the approval of the deal.