The largest Saudi investment in Bulgaria is expected to start within weeks. This became clear during a meeting between the Minister of Economy and Industry Nikola Stoyanov with Mohammad Alhakbani, CEO of the Saudi company "Tawal" and representatives of his management team. They are in the process of purchasing 100% of the passive infrastructure of the mobile networks in Bulgaria of BTC, which are currently managed by the United Group.
"In recent months, we have extremely intensive contacts at the state level between Bulgaria and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and we are seeing the first results in investments," said Minister Nikola Stoyanov. According to him, he has traveled to Riyadh twice in recent months, and during his visit to our country he also met the Minister of Economy and Planning of Saudi Arabia. "We have repeatedly emphasized that it is only a matter of time before these good contacts have an impact in the economy as well, and I am glad that we are seeing the first concrete results," emphasized the Minister of Economy.
Mohammad Alhakbani presented the plans of the company he leads. It is in the process of purchasing the infrastructure of the Bulgarian telecom, and together with it they will also acquire property in Slovenia and Croatia. "We are planning a step-by-step expansion in Europe, and our plans are to locate a regional hub here in Sofia," he explained. According to him, his company hopes to be among those preconditions that will make more Bulgarians return from abroad with the working conditions they can offer them.
"Our efforts as a government are aimed precisely at attracting investments with high added value. One of the fastest growing sectors in our country is that of information and communication technologies, and for its future growth connectivity is key," said Nikola Stoyanov and expressed his satisfaction that a company with ambitions for the development of this infrastructure is setting foot in Bulgaria.
During the meeting, it became clear that the total amount of the transaction for the infrastructure in Bulgaria, Slovenia and Croatia amounts to 1.2 billion euros. The details of how many of them are for the network in Bulgaria are still awaited, but it will certainly be the largest single Saudi investment in our country.
TAWAL is a subsidiary of Saudi Telecom STC. The company's core activities include the design, construction and management of consolidated telecommunications infrastructure facilities that enable state-of-the-art and modular connectivity. On April 20 of this year TAWAL and UNITED GROUP have signed an agreement to implement a transaction to acquire BTC's passive infrastructure. Together with this UNITED GROUP (owner of BTC) sells 100% of the passive infrastructure of its mobile networks in Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovenia to TAWAL. The preliminary estimates are that about 60% of the acquired assets under the deal are in Bulgaria.