Siberia | Telecoms, media

No “green light” for Russian use of Siberian and Nokia Siemens telecom gear

26 Feb '13
Telecom equipment developed ad manufactured by Tomsk’s Micran and Nokia Siemens Network is not legally considered “Russian-made.” The situation disables Vainakh Telecom, a telecom operator in the Republic of Chechnya, in Russia’s Northern Caucasus area, from launching its new LTE network as it has been built on this equipment,, a Siberian news source, reports.

The equipment has been developed by Wireless Technology Center, a JV between Micran and Nokia Siemens Network; the Tomsk company holds a reported 25% stake in the joint venture. But to be considered Russian and allowed for use on Russian telecom networks any piece of equipment must be produced by a company at least 50% owned by the Russian state or Russian nationals—such is a legal provision behind the scandal.

Vedomosti, a Russian business daily, earlier reported plans by Rusnano, Russia’s nanotech giant, to orchestrate a deal with Micran and buy out 25% from the international JV partner. There’s been no confirmation so far of any plan like that.

So, the advanced equipment’s status is still unclear, and Vainakh Telecom, a JV customer, is only permitted to use its new LTE network for “noncommercial purposes.” The network is also regarded as “illicit” until any legal motion on the situation is made.
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