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MTS to restart Turkmenistan unit
04 May 2012
Turkmenistan government to allow Russian mobile operator MTS to resume services to compete with state company
MTS is set to return to Turkmenistan, almost a year and a half after its operations in the country were suspended.
Vladimir Yevtushenkov, major shareholder in and president of Sistema — the controlling shareholder of MTS — said on Turkmen state television that the operator will resume services within three to six months.
A new agreement between Yevtushenkov and Turkmenistan’s president, Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov, ends a dispute under which the government cancelled MTS’s licence in 2010, which made government-owned Altyn Asyr the only operator in the country.
Yevtushenkov told the Associated Press: “A year and a half ago, MTS stopped working in Turkmenistan due to the expiration of its licence. Both MTS and, I think, the quality of communications suffered in Turkmenistan because of that.”
At the time, MTS aggressively fought the licence cancellation, going to the extent of discouraging the international business community from investing in Turkmenistan, said the report.
The operator has been locked in a legal dispute on the issue and held active negotiations with the Turkmen government. GTB
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