The European Investment Bank said it is lending Ecu223 million (FFr9 billion) to France Telecom's unit Mobistar to invest in its GSM mobile network.
Mobistar is the second mobile operator in Belgium in competition with Belgacom.
"For the EIB, this operation ties in with its policy of providing support for communications networks, in keeping with the EU's directive on mobile telephony and on establishing competitive national networks," it said.
"Users should enjoy an even better quality of service at competitive prices as a result of opening up of the Belgian market, together with the arrival of a third operator scheduled in the near future," it said.
Mobistar is uprating its capacity and facilities to improve its geographical coverage and the investments should lead to 540 jobs being created between now and 1999 and further expansion of the subscriber base, it said.
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