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Japan’s KDDI Bids for Burma’s Telecom Market

28 January 2013

Japanese telecommunications giant KDDI and trading company Sumitomo are considering a joint venture to create Burma’s first foreign-owned mobile phone company, Japanese newspaper The Asahi Shimbun reports. Burma began the process of opening up the telecom market on Jan. 15, by inviting companies to apply for two national licenses to operate in the sector. KDDI has entered a bid to provide telecommunications operations, while Sumitomo has also started discussing plans to solidify infrastructure and customer bases in Burma. Of the country’s 62 million people, only 5 percent are mobile phone subscribers. The government hopes to increase that rate by inviting foreign players to the market.