Skip to main content

Taxpayers sink $2 billion to keep Pacific telco out of Chinese hands

by Cameron Sinclair •
Subscriber preview

Australian taxpayers will spend almost $2 billion so Telstra can purchase debt-laden Pacific telco operator Digicel, a strategic deal aimed squarely at preventing the company falling into Chinese hands.

After more than a year of negotiations, the Australian government is handing Telstra a package worth around A$1.78 billion (US$1.33 billion) to buy Digicel from Irish billionaire Denis O’Brien.

Telstra will own 100 per cent of the new entity, which has operations in Papua New Guinea, Nauru, Samoa, Vanuatu, Tonga and Fiji.

The big winner is Telstra CEO Andy Penn, who has bolstered his relationship with the government and cut a deal with minimal risk to his shareholders.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here to keep reading

Want more content like this? Contact our team for subscription options!

  • Stay up-to-date on the latest news in government
  • Navigate market uncertainty with executive-level reports
  • Gain a deeper understanding of public sector procurement trends
  • Know exactly where government is spending
Jurisdiction
  • Federal
Category
  • Telecommunications
Sector
  • Defence
  • Industry & Investment
  • Infrastructure
  • PM / Premier & Cabinet