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Kazakhstan scoffs at suggestion it is interested in MTS Belarus


According to TeleGeography News agency BelTA reports the Kazakh ambassador to Belarus, Ergali Bulegenov, as saying that his country is not in talks concerning the purchase of a controlling stake in Belarusian mobile operator MTS Belarus. In a press conference on 14 December, Bulegenov suggesting that the asking price was too high and not beneficial to the Kazakh side, and that as such: Kazakhstan has not entered into any negotiation.

The government of Belarus plans to sell its majority stake in MTS Belarus for USD1 billion, despite apparent disinterest to date from potential buyers. Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) of Russia, which owns 49% of the cellco, has long argued that the USD1 billion valuation is inflated and to bear this out, the state has spent over a year now trying unsuccessfully to offload its equity stake. It is thought that along with MTS, Turkish mobile network operator Turkcell and an Iranian investment vehicle are reportedly interested in the stake. The date of the auction has yet to be finalised.

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