Oman’s sultan rubber-stamped the licensing of Oman Future Telecommunications (OFT) as the country’s third mobile operator, with the new provider set to launch using the Vodafone brand.
Sultan Haitham bin Tari’s royal decree revealing the move was published by state information outlet Oman News Agency earlier today (5 January).
The launch of Vodafone Oman will increase competition to existing providers Ooredoo and Omantel, which currently share the country’s 5.7 million connections.
Creation of a third provider has been in the works for a number of years, with a process to award a licence back in 2017 running into complications and subsequently put on ice.
In 2019, Vodafone Group announced it had struck a partner market deal with OFT to collaborate on the build and launch of a new network in the country. Originally services were meant to go to market last year.
Although the new network will be marketed as Vodafone Oman, the name is being licenced through a partner market agreement. Full details of the arrangement have not been disclosed, though news website Arabian Business reported Vodafone Group held none of OFT’s capital, with the operator owned by local investors.