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Golden Telecom reports initiation of full-scale operations in the Tatarstan

26 июня 2006
In March 2006, Golden Telecom acquired a 70% ownership interest in Tatintelcom (see http://www.miks.ru/news/news.php?pid=5194&tn=o ).

Today Tatintelcom offers broadband Internet access services to corporate clients using asymmetric digital subscriber line technology. According to the Russian State Statistics Committee, the number of legal entities registered in Tatarstan by the end of 2005 included 2,999 industrial enterprises and 17,500 small businesses, a significant share of which is located in Kazan.

Golden Telecom plans to develop and provide broadband Internet access services in Kazan and other districts of Tatarstan. In the process, the company will gradually shift its focus from corporate clients to end users.

The acquisition of Tatintelcom has provided Golden Telecom with access to the “last mile”, a considerable customer base, and almost 80% coverage of Kazan. In addition, it was the company’s first step in the process of planned implementation of its own broadband access rollout strategy.

On June 5, 2006, Golden Telecom completed construction of a FOCL on the Nizhny Novgorod – Kazan segment. Once the segment is commissioned by Rossvyaznadzor, Golden Telecom will launch commercial operations. The Nizhny Novgorod – Kazan segment is 490 kilometers long.

The construction of the FOCL between Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, and Ufa was initiated in January 2004 under a commercial agreement with Vimpelсom. In March 2006, Golden Telecom announced the inauguration of the first 485 kilometer long segment between Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod. The FOCL constructed by Golden Telecom consist of new generation networks that enable the company to provide high quality Internet access services and voice services. Development of our fiber-optic network is part of the company’s broadband access rollout strategy. In addition, it allows the company to enter the long distance communication market and take advantage of its new license on provision of intercity and international telephone communication services obtained on May 31, 2005.

By launching its own FOCL, Golden Telecom will be able to optimize and significantly reduce its expenditures associated with the lease of trunk channels from other providers, offer competitive rates to end users and Internet providers in Tatarstan, and offer considerably more attractive telephone rates to end users while maintaining Golden Telecom’s traditionally high quality of telephone services offered. Inauguration of the FOCL will also enable the company to offer more attractive rates to Golden Telecom corporate clients, and availability of its own access point to the trunk FOCL in Kazan, as well as its own communication node, will enable Golden Telecom to successfully solve the “last mile” problem for corporate clients the number of which has been steadily growing in Kazan.

The Information Technologies Center of the Republic of Tatarstan held a tender for the right to provide Internet access services to state authorities and governmental institutions in Tatarstan. All leading Internet providers in Tatarstan took part in the tender. The contract was awarded to Golden Telecom. A Memorandum of Understanding between Golden Telecom and the Government of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan on the development of the information and communication infrastructure of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan has been prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Informatization and Communication of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan. Within this document’s framework, Golden Telecom will develop modern info-communications technologies that will meet the needs of the republic's telecommunications market, extend and upgrade existing telecommunications networks, increase the company's network capacity in major populated areas of Tatarstan and introduce new telecommunications services, in particular broadband access services on the territory of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan.

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