May 17, 2010 / 8:04 PM / in 10 years

One group left in race for Mexico's fiber optic

MEXICO CITY, May 17 (Reuters) - Only one bidder remains in the race for two strands of the Mexican government-owned fiber optic network after a local telecoms group firm withdrew from the process, the communications and transportation ministry said on Monday.

Iusatel, controlled by retail and media entrepreneur Ricardo Salinas Pliego, withdrew from the auction process after rejecting the tender terms, leaving a consortium of cable operator Megacable (MEGACPO.MX), broadcaster Televisa TLVACPO.MX (TV.N) and Spain’s Telefonica (TEF.MC), as the sole bidder.

The Mexican government is auctioning off unused capacity in the telecommunications network owned by the state electricity monopoly with an eye toward boosting competition in Mexico’s telecommunications market, dominated by tycoon Carlos Slim.

The government is expected to award the fiber on June 9 if it accepts the bid from the consortium. (Reporting by Cyntia Barrera Diaz, editing by Leslie Gevirtz)

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