Telefónica gains $75 million loan for Ecuador spectrum

01 March 2016 | Jason McGee-Abe


Telefónica’s Ecuadorian unit has brokered a $75 million loan with the World Bank that will enable it to make its second instalment of spectrum fee and expand mobile broadband services.

The World Bank’s private sector arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), has granted the $75 million loan to Telefónica’s Ecuadorian subsidiary Otecel to enable it to, among other things, make the second of three payments to the Ecuadorian state for the 4G LTE spectrum assigned in 2015.

“Otecel thanks IFC for the confidence that it has shown and which allows it to meet its obligations to the state with respect to the 4G LTE spectrum concession,” said José Manuel Casas, CEO of Telefónica Ecuador.

The last payment for the spectrum will be made toward the end of 2016. 

“This level of support from IFC is evidence of the transparency, effective management, commitment, and quality of service that Telefónica offers to its 5 million customers in the country and to the more than 315 million clients across the world.”

The IFC sees the development of telecommunications as vital for promoting growth in emerging economies. Guillermo Mulville, the IFC’s telecom team head for Latin America and the Caribbean, stated: “A number of studies have demonstrated that a 10 percent increase in broadband coverage can lead to an increase of 1.5 percent in a country’s gross domestic product.”