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media release
December 7, 2000

Hutchison announces A$420m replacement facility

Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Limited (Hutchison) today announced that it had successfully negotiated favourable replacement financing for its existing A$223m facility, which currently is undrawn.

"From mid December, we will be replacing our existing arrangements with a 364-day, A$420m bridging facility, which offers the benefit of lower funding costs," Hutchison Chief Financial Officer, Mr Stephen Gardiner said.

The new facility will be provided by a club of four of Hutchison's existing relationship banks: ABN AMRO Bank, The Chase Manhattan Bank, Citibank and West LB. Unlike the current arrangement, the new facility does not require a guarantee from Hutchison's parent company, Hutchison Whampoa Limited.

"We are delighted and encouraged by the strong support shown by the banks in providing this new financing," Mr Gardiner said. "These leading institutions have an ongoing relationship with our company. They understand our business and are firm supporters of our strategy to invest in advanced networks to deliver innovative communication services."

Hutchison will use part of the facility to fund payment of the balance due on the Samsung contract for the Orange One network. The remaining 90% of the contract price is due to be paid upon Hutchison's acceptance of the Orange One network in late 2000 or early 2001.

The facility will also provide funding for the continued development of the Orange One business and early costs associated with the establishment of Hutchison's national high-speed network.

While Hutchison has already begun acquiring sites for this network, it is still negotiating with vendors for the contract to supply network infrastructure.

"Within the next 12 months, we will put in place longer term funding which will cover the cost of this infrastructure as well as the further development of our business operations," Mr Gardiner said.

Hutchison currently has no debt on its balance sheet.


media contact

Melina Reed, National Public Affairs Manager, Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Limited
Tel: (02) 8902 0554    Orange One (office & mobile)

Trish Fox, Public Affairs Manager, Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Limited
Tel: (02) 8902 3250    Orange One (office & mobile)

Orange products and services are provided in Australia by Hutchison Telecommunications (Australia) Limited.