‘A new front’ or even ‘a war of proximity’ is taking place between Washington and Beijing, one that is creating ‘a new hitch’ in the ‘deal of the century’. From the pages of the Wall Street Journal to the columns of the French press, the Ethiopian telecoms sector’s liberalisation – one of the most divisive battles within the industry in Africa over the past decade – has turned into a surprising ideological and geopolitical battle, open to the most varied interpretations.
Has Addis Ababa become the new front in the China-US technological war within a span of a few weeks (from the end of April to the beginning of June)? US media and some telecom experts in Africa seem to think so. According to the latter, Ethiopia’s decision to grant its new telecoms licence to a consortium -comprised of UK’s Vodafone and its subsidiaries Vodacom (Africa) as well as Safaricom (Kenya) – rather than to
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