Qatari TV giant beIN resumes service in Egypt

Doha-based company continues broadcasts in Egypt two days after dispute with country’s cable network over commercial terms.

CAIRO - Qatar broadcasting giant beIN said Thursday it will resume its service in Egypt, days after pulling the plug over a dispute with its only cable network in the country.

Doha-based BeIN, which broadcasts several major sporting events, has been on the frontline of a diplomatic rift between Qatar and regional powers including Egypt.

But two days after announcing it was cutting its service to Egypt's CNE, BeIN said it had resolved the dispute over commercial terms.

"BeIN SPORTS is pleased to announce that Cable Network Egypt (CNE) has now signed an agreement for the carriage of beIN on its network," the media group said.

CNE also confirmed in a statement that beIN's sports service had resumed.

BeIN provides several sports via CNE including the English Premier League, Champions League, major tennis tournaments, NBA and Formula One.

It is thought up to 300,000 viewers used the service.

"We are delighted that fans across Egypt can now, once again, have access to the best and most exciting sports and entertainment in the world," beIN said in its Thursday statement.

Since June 2017, a group of countries including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have led a political and economic boycott of Qatar.

Last January, an Egyptian court imposed a $22-million fine on beIN for "violating anti-trust regulations".

BeIN's CEO Nasser al-Khelaifi, who is also president of Paris Saint-Germain football club, was also fined 400 million Egyptian pounds as part of the ruling.

During the diplomatic crisis beIN has launched a $1-billion compensation claim against Saudi broadcasters, who it accuses of playing a central role in a vast piracy operation by illegally showing hundreds of live sports programmes.