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Etisalat has defaulted on $800 million that it owes Pakistan on account of privatization proceeds after buying shares at Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL), the Tribune newspaper reported.

Etisalat had bought 26 percent of the shares in PTCL in 2005 for a price tag of $2.6 billion, while the second lowest bid was only $1.4 billion, after which the UAE-based firm tried to backtrack from the offer.

Pakistan’s privatization minister, Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, agreed for Etisalat to pay an initial value of $1.4 billion, and the rest to be paid in nine installments until 2010. He also committed to transferring PTCL owned properties to them.

A delegation from Etisalat visited Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Tuesday to discuss the issue. This was their second visit in the last month.

The Pakistani government informed the company that there were 33 outstanding properties that they could not transfer, and that they would recalculate the amount owed minus the value of those properties, according to the Tribune.

The issue remained on hold until now where Etisalat is finalizing its own valuation of those properties.

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