Monday, November 14, 2005

Etisalat CEO Resigns

Information & Technology Publishing ran a story a few days ago about Obaid Saied Bin Mes’har (CEO of Etisalat International) handing in his resignation. He had been heading Etisalat International since it was established in March 2005.

ITP claims that while Etisalat is yet to release any official statement about Bin Mes'har's resignation, there is a suggestion that his departure might be linked to the failure of the Etisalat-PTCL deal.

The Daily Times, however, claims in this article that Etisalat has been given yet another two weeks to pay the remaining money -- and other news media have reported that Etisalat wants to raise some of the money from Pakistani banks, to lower their risk and investment.


Merlinx said...

Well that doesn't dismiss the fact that our behemoth state-backed organizations are in a real mess. First it was KESC now the PTCL deal has bitten the dust. And when the media says the govt. has "...given Etisalaat a deadline to pay..." up it sounds like Etisalaat has the short straw in the draw! That's b.s. Unless these big organizations are cleaned up, it will just be one deal falling after another like dominos. The Toms, Dicks and Harrys of PTCL may have won this round but at the end of the day it is the consumers who will suffer as long as as certain riffraff know their monopoly cannot be broken. The way to bring down and tame this beast if you cannot do it from the inside is to do it from the outside. I.e. grant licenses to competitors of PTCL to provide the same services. Nothing brings a bullying, monopolistic organization in check like some good ol' healthy competition from another 900 lb. gorilla in the yard.

SQ said...

Yes, but who is going to grant licenses to competitors? Who is going to bring down the monopoly...?

Merlinx said...

The government should if it is serious about mopping up Pakistan's telecom landscape. If plan-a doesn't work they better switch to a plan-b. But if this is just some get-rich-quick or hair-brained money-making scheme, not much else to say. Think about where you would be today if there was only one PTCL-controlled cellular service monopolizing the whole horizon after all these years.

SQ said...

heh. Well, the problem is the PTCL is the government's. And so is PTA. And so it's difficult for PTA to police PTCL (or so it seems). PTA was originally founded to be a telecom governing body. But they hardly do anything -- even when it comes to policing private telecom entities (such as cellular companies).

Merlinx said...

You can get a decent DSL connection here in USA, that gives you at least 512 Kbps, for less than $20 -- that is what? RS.1200? This same bandwidth used to cost around $40 to $70 about 4 years ago when DSL first took off here. Not only have the rates dropped, the technology has changed from wired to wireless (WiFi). The key is competition.

And the powers that be (the government) simply changes (adapts) the laws to accommodate the pace of progress and development (of new technologies). The pace of progress does not stagnate or suffer at the expense of laws that don't change. Both have to keep pace with one another else society suffers. If they do not keep pace, one will merely act as a retardant for the other.

I guess if Pakistan is still struggling between PTA vs. PTCL, or how to tax this vs. that, or how to police this vs. that, it has more fundamental issues than privatizing organizations like PTCL. It really needs to figure out whether it wants to maintain the status quo and stagnate as a society.

"Privatizing" is a mindset that has to be accepted first. People in general and that means all through the society have to agree and support the philosophy before the paperwork is promulgated. Well that means all people in the concerned food chain. It seems as if someone endorsed the paperwork to privatize, probably at some high level meeting, before the culture changed. Then people affected who didn't like the decision decided to derail the process. Opposing forces at work. Not everyone sees eye to eye? You have a cultural problem at hand. And where nature prevailed over nurture and the culture could not be changed and stagnation won, it eventually caved in e.g PTCL or KESC. No one wants to end up owning a white elephant in today's world.

If you are in a position of power, you need to engineer circumstances and forces that break the status quo. If it doesn't work from the top-down then try it bottom-up. If you cannot do it from the outside-in, try changing it from the inside-out. There is always a plan-B.

Not everyone will love you but change will triumph over stagnation. The real question is what do you want deep down? What are the real motives?

SQ said...

"If you are in a position of power, you need to engineer circumstances and forces that break the status quo."

If that was as easily said as done in Pakistan, it would have already happened. The real motives of the people than govern the country are apparent to all. And if the motives (or the person) seems noble, then that person cannot change things because of other forces, pressures, people, and politics.

In any case, this will become more of a political discussion, and I'd rather not indulge in that on this forum. :-)