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Russian telecom companies get the green signal to share 5G networks

The approach to building 5G network infrastructure in Russia appears to be a team effort of Russian telecom companies rather than a competitive space in Russia.

The Federal Antitrust Service (FAS) has given the green light to a petition submitted by Russian telecom operators for the construction and launch of the latest 5G cellular network. The FAS has agreed on a cooperation agreement between Russian telecommunications operators for this purpose. 

Russian telecom companies

As reported by local media, the petition filed by Russian telecom operators Bashinformsvyaz, Rostelecom, MegaFon and VimpelCom (Beeline brand) was approved by the Russian federal competition watchdog.

However, to ensure fair play in the competitive cellular network market, FAS had established a condition to provide equivalent access to bands for all market players in that space. 

Developing Telecoms reports that apart from the previously accepted condition, telecom operators have yet to synchronize some other conditions with the antitrust authority. 

These would revolve around the exchange of radio frequencies, the use of infrastructure and the provision of infrastructure for market players such as virtual telecommunications operators (MVNOs).

Opportunity to provide new 5G network infrastructures and services: FAS
The FAS specifically said that the 5G infrastructure, once built, will be useful in providing state-of-the-art communications services to the Russian people. 

In addition, they said that providing access to the radio frequency spectrum initiated for the development of the 5G network infrastructure and subsequent communication services through mobile radiotelephony based on the 5G network will be a great opportunity in the territory of the Russian Federation.

In Russia the focus on building 5G network infrastructure appears to be a team effort rather than a competitive space in Russia. 

The company would likely be seen by the Russian Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Media as a unique infrastructure that would aid in the creation of a network to be used by all mobile telecommunications operators. 

In this regard, the FAS had also approved a request to create a 5G joint venture between Rostelecom, MTS, Vimpelcom (Beeline) and MegaFon, in December 2020.

Industrial test benches will be launched soon
Evgeny Novikov, Deputy Director of the Moscow Information Technology Department, said Russia will soon launch industrial test fields in the capital Moscow to understand and learn the possibilities and applications of the 5G network.

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