Gov’t sells GT&T shares to Chinese company for US$30M

The Government has sold its 20% shares in the Guyana Telephone & Telegraph company to a Chinese company for US$30M, Cabinet Secretary Dr Roger Luncheon announced today.

Dr Luncheon, who said that the decision to sell was taken at yesterday’s Cabinet meeting, said the company conducted its due diligence and decided to purchase the shares. The Government will receive US$25M up front and the remaining US$5M will be paid over the next five years.

Asked what motivated the sale,  Dr Luncheon said that US$30M is a lot of money even though the government was receiving a little over US$2M a year from the telephone company, The government had retained 20% when it sold the remainder to GT&T’s parent company, ATN in 1991.

The sale to the Chinese company will have the greatest impact on ATN/GT&T as the 20% shareholder  may come with particular demands.

Government and GT&T/ATN have had tense relations over the period and a key outstanding issue is the question of the monopoly that GT&T has over the international gateway.

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