Lanka invites Maxis, Telekom to invest in satellite

4 January 2010 11:42 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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NEW DELHI: Sri Lanka is inviting two top Malaysian teleco operators Maxis Communications Berhad and Telekom Malaysia to invest in their US$150 million (RM525 million) maiden satellite project. Plans are in the pipeline to launch the nation's first geostationary satellite after it signed a deal with United Kingdombased Surrey Satellite Technologies Limited (SSTL) last December.

"We have invited Maxis (Communications) and Telekom Malaysia, both of which have already invested in Sri Lanka," Priyantha Kariyapperuma, directorgeneral of Sri Lanka's Telecom Regulatory Commission, told Bernama in telephone interview from Colombo.

"They have expressed interest and said they will invest if the project is commercially viable," he said.

Dialog, a subsidiary of Axiata Group Bhd (formerly known as TM International), is the top telecommunications service provider in Sri Lanka, with the largest mobile network.

Maxis became another major Malaysian player in the island after its parent company Usaha Tegas purchased a sizeable stake in Sri Lanka Telecom. Kariyapperuma said the invitation was still in a preliminary stage and nothing constructive had emerged yet from the two companies.

"It is still in preliminary stage, we should be able to get more details later this year," he said. The Sri Lankan government is in the process of setting up its space agency and plans to launch its first satellite, to be named after the famous British physicist Sri Arthur C. Clarke who made the island his home until his death. - Bernama
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