The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

In re­sponse to a state­ment is­sued by the East­ern Caribbean Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions Reg­u­la­tory Au­thor­ity (ECTEL) re­gard­ing the merger of Colum­bus and Cable & Wire­less Com­mu­ni­ca­tions plc, the com­pa­nies said, “We wel­come ECTEL’s com­mit­ment to un­der­stand fully the im­pact of this trans­ac­tion. Nat­u­rally, in any large deal re­lat­ing to op­er­a­tions in 42 Latin Amer­i­can and Caribbean coun­tries, there will be con­cerns in the six mar­kets where over­lap­ping op­er­a­tions ex­ist. We are com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing that cus­tomer choice and com­pe­ti­tion are pro­moted by our trans­ac­tion. Colum­bus and CWC se­nior man­age­ment have been meet­ing with Gov­ern­ments and Reg­u­la­tors in those six coun­tries af­fected by the merger - St. Vincent & the Gre­nadines, Ja­maica, Trinidad and Tobago, and Bar­ba­dos this week - and we plan to visit St. Lu­cia and Gre­nada next week, as well as to meet with the ECTEL Ex­ec­u­tive to ad­dress con­cerns raised.

‘We have been en­cour­aged by the open con­ver­sa­tions with some of the key stake­hold­ers im­pacted by this an­nounce­ment. The facts are that this trans­ac­tion will bol­ster com­pe­ti­tion against our larger com­peti­tor (that had also bid for the same Colum­bus as­sets); it will also in­crease cus­tomer choice and boost long term in­vest­ment and em­ploy­ment across the Caribbean. We firmly be­lieve that this trans­ac­tion will be re­ceived pos­i­tively by our cus­tomers and Gov­ern­ments alike.

‘Once we ob­tain the nec­es­sary clear­ances, LIME and Flow cus­tomers can look for­ward to a full range of ex­cit­ing new prod­ucts, with un­matched qual­ity of net­works and down­load speeds, sav­ings on their cur­rent prices, and an im­prove­ment in over­all ser­vice. We ex­pect to up­date our cus­tomers on our new plans once we have fi­nalised our dis­cus­sions with the Reg­u­la­tors and Gov­ern­ments of the com­mu­ni­ties we serve.”

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