Interview: Tunisian PM says GE CEO Immelt to visit Tunis in two weeks time

By bne IntelliNews April 2, 2014

WASHINGTON (CI MENA) - Tunisian Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa said that he is preparing to welcome GE chief executive Jeff Immelt to Tunis in two weeks time following his visit with President Barack Obama on Friday, April 4, 2014.

In an interview using Google Glass with Capitol Intelligence at CSIS on Wednesday, Jomaa said that GE CEO Immelt’s visit highlights the fact that Tunisia has become an important destination for investment.

At an event at the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington, Jomaa said he sees Tunisia as a “start-up, a democracy start-up but I am sure of the dividends that it will pay-out.”

One of the topics discussed during the visit was a potential joint investment in Tunisie Telecom by Dubai-based Abraaj Capital and a US private equity player such as CarlyleBlackstoneDavis Advisors or KKR.

Tarak Ben Ammar, the owner of North Africa’s largest TV broadcast group and board member of Telecom Italia and Mediobanca, said the Tunisie Telecom privatization would offer opportunities to both Telecom Italia and private equity funds such as Abraaj and US and European funds.

Also attending the US Chamber of Commerce event, Abraaj Capital director for Tunisia Adel Goucha said that the sale of a 35% stake in Tunisie Telecom by Dubai Holding's Emirates International Telecommuncations (EIT) would be interesting for Abraaj if the government were to allow the buyer to exercise a previously stipulated option to acquire an additional 16% in the company and thus allow any new buyer to control a 51% majority stake in the operator. 

At a CEO dinner hosted for the Tunisian Prime Minister by the National US-Arab Chamber of Commerce (NUSACC), Tunisisie Valeurs CEO Fadhel Abdlelkefi said the government is currently seeking to list a 25% stake in the country's Tunisiana operator.

Abdelkefi said unions in Tunisie Telecom currently oppose the government giving up a controlling stake in the company.

Goucha said the private equity firm would be open to joining forces with LAP GreenN telecom group, owned by Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), and with western private equity groups.

Another US group rapidly expanding in Tunisia is Bethesda, Maryland-based Marriott, with three major property deals already underway such a Ritz Carlton in Carthage, a Marriott in Sousse and an airport hotel planned for Tunis, Marriott vice president for portfolio risk management Patrick R. Rodrigues said.

Marriott also anounced today the purchase of South Africa's Protea Hospitality Holdings that expands the company's rooms in Africa to about 23,000.   

On Tuesday, Jomaa met senior executives of Google and Microsoft in New York and will meet IMF managing director Christine Lagarde tomorrow morning.

by PK Semler in Washington, Dc.  For more information please call +1-202-549-3399 or email pks@capitolintelgroup.com

Related Articles

Hungarian PM's "proxy" moves into the nuclear industry as Paks tenders approach

Firms controlled by Hungarian oligarch Lorinc Meszaros have purchased a 51% stake in the Hungarian subsidiary of Czech nuclear ... more

CEZ set to place Czech nuclear assets in new unit

Czech state-controlled energy group CEZ is set to place all nuclear-related activities into a new division, local media reported on May 17. The move raises speculation that the company is ... more

TAP suspends work on Albania pipeline after uncovering ancient settlement

Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) AG company, which is in charge of the construction of the TAP gas project, has temporarily suspended works on the pipeline near the Turan village in Korca in the ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss