Minsvyaz formulating plans for distribution of four 3G concessions

11 Apr 2005

The Ministry for Communications and Informatisation (Minsvyaz) is currently drawing up a new plan for the allocation of radio frequencies, including 3G spectrum, Russian Telecoms minister Leonid Reiman told local news sources. Reiman says that the band allocated for future UMTS services will accommodate four operators, although any plans to auction the frequency will have to wait until the government approves the new allocations, which is not expected to happen until early 2006. Operators have been waiting for the Minsvyaz to announce its intentions for 3G for some time. Originally, in June 2004, Reiman said that the government would be issuing licences in early 2005, though he later admitted that this was unrealistic. The minister’s latest announcement appears to confirm that the government intends to award four national concessions, rather than opt for distributing three national and seven regional licences (corresponding to the territories of the seven Federal Districts) as once mooted.