MTN Group has revealed that it in talks with the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in a bid to review the N1.04tr fine slammed against it to N208bn while it liaises with the Nigerian banking sector for loans to offset the huge fine.
The head of research, Renaissance Capital (RenCap) in Nigeria, Adesoji Solanke, revealed this in his note to clients on Wednesday.
“MTN is pushing to reduce the fine by 60 to 80 percent,” Bloomberg quoted Solanke to have said. According to Bloomberg, a second lender said that “MTN is considering borrowing from banks, as it recently checked what the banks’ lending capacity to it is”.
MTN has 11 more days to its November 16 deadline for paying up the biggest fine in the history of telecommunications in Nigeria.
The Johannesburg-based company’s shares lost almost a quarter of their value following the disclosure of the fine, before recovering nine percent over the past two sessions. The fine stemmed from MTN Nigeria’s failure to disconnect 5.1 million subscribers who had not registered according to NCC regulations.
When MTN’s spokesman was contacted by Bloomberg over the said bank lending, he said, “we don’t comment on banking matters and banking regulators in Nigeria are best placed to provide context on these matters.”