Moscow, Russian Federation – Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (“MTS” – NYSE: MBT), the leading telecommunications provider in Russia and the CIS, announces the commercial launch of its 3G network in Turkmenistan that completes the deployment of "third generation" networks in all markets of operation of the MTS Group. Today, MTS offers high-speed mobile Internet access to residents and visitors throughout Russia, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Belarus, Armenia and Turkmenistan.
In Russia, the Company’s 3G network was launched in May 2008. Mobile broadband is now available to MTS subscribers in more than 360 cities across the country. In Ukraine, MTS’ CDMA network provides data transfer rates of up to 3.1 Mbps and covers more than 200 regional centers. In Uzbekistan, MTS launched its 3G network into commercial operation in December 2008 and now provides coverage in Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara, Urgench and Khiva. The employed HSDPA technology delivers data transfer rates of up to 3.6 Mbps enabling innovative services such as video calling. The first VivaCell-MTS 3G network was launched in April 2009 in the three largest Armenian cities – Yerevan, Gyumri and Vanadzor. The HSPA/UMTS technology in Armenia provides for data transfer speeds of up to 7.2 Mbps with the MTS network covering about 93% of population in 650 localities. In Yerevan, the network is based on the more advanced HSPA+ technology that allows for speeds of up to 21.6 Mbps.
In Turkmenistan, MTS’ 3G network currently covers the center of Ashgabat, the capital city of the republic, as well as the surrounding area of the international airport. MTS Turkmenistan subscribers will be able to access Internet with download speeds of up to 21 Mbps and upload speeds of up to 11 Mbps. The Company plans to launch its 3G network in Turkmenbashi City in the near future and will continue the build-out so as to cover all of the provincial centers.
"The commercial launch of the HSPA + 3G network is a major milestone for MTS Turkmenistan and MTS Group as a whole. MTS is now offering its subscribers a qualitatively new level of broadband Internet access and data sharing. The significant increase in mobile Internet usage in countries with 3G coverage indicates that there is a great demand for broadband Internet access that creates a powerful incentive for the further development of innovative technologies. We plan to expand our next-generation networks, increase coverage areas and provide innovative services with the aim of enhancing possibilities for mobile communications in all countries where we operate,” commented Oleg Raspopov, MTS Vice President and Head of Business Unit "MTS Foreign Subsidiaries".
Total capital expenditures (CAPEX) of the MTS Group in the first half of 2010 amounted to $566 million. The Company expects an increase in CAPEX in the second half of 2010 and maintains its previous CAPEX guidance of 22-24% of revenue for the full year 2010.
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For further information, please contact in Moscow:
Joshua B. Tulgan
Director, Investor Relations
Acting Director, Corporate Finance
Department of Investor Relations
Mobile TeleSystems OJSC
Tel: +7 495 223 2025
Learn more about MTS. Visit the official blog of the Investor Relations Department at www.mtsgsm.com/blog/