Author: Mikhail Doroshevich
Belarusian incumbent telco Beltelecom is going to do away with its monopoly on interconnection with foreign operators no sooner than in two years. This decision has been announced recently by the first deputy minister of communications and informatisation Ivan Rak at the opening of international exhibition "Perspective technologies and systems" in Minsk.
"We have to rebalance tariffs which are subsidized by by the state, and bring them into correspondence with prime costs, at least, and this could happen at the end of 2010" - Ivan Rak said.
He noted that Belarusian parliament has adopted changes into the Law on telecommunications concerning the interconnection issues. Now the amended draft law is waiting for presidential approval. "We try to consider operators' suggestions, including national "Beltelecom", while developing procedures of interconnection, as their interests concur with those of state". - first deputy added.
In February, 2003, Ivan Rak said: "It is known that one of the preconditions for Belarus to become a member of WTO is liberalization of telecommunication services market". He also stated that in 2007, the country "will be ready" to give foreign investors the possibility to work in those spheres of service where "Beltelcom" is a holder of exclusive licenses. In January, 2003, at the Meeting of WTO, that 15 WTO members showed interest in this sector of services and stated that Belarusian incumbent telco liberalization in 2007 is quite possible and desirable.
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