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Bangladesh looking into new fees for Robi-Airtel merger

TheBangladesh government has proposed that the new companyformed by the merger of Robi Axiata and Airtel Bangladesh will have to pay anadditional 5 billion Bangladeshi taka for using Airtel's existing 1800 MHzspectrum, Telecom Asia reported April 27.

Authoritiesare reportedly seeking additional payments to make up for the differencebetween the amount Robi paid for spectrum in 2011 and the lower amount Airtelpaid in 2005 for the 1800 MHz frequency. Supplementary fees related to themerger will also be collected.

Robi Axiataand Airtel Bangladesh agreed to merge their operations in January 2016, withAxiata controlling 68.3% in the new company while Airtel will own 25%.

Robi Axiatais a joint venture between AxiataGroup Bhd., Malaysia, andNTT DoCoMo Inc.Airtel Bangladesh is a unit of Bharti Airtel Ltd.

As of April 27, US$1 was equivalent to 78.41Bangladeshi taka.