Monthly Archives: May 2004

Kazakhstan’s Court Blocks GSM License Tender

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -(Dow Jones)- A city court in Astana late Thursday blocked the auction of a third Kazakh GSM mobile-phone license scheduled by the government for June 1.

GSM or Global System for Mobile telecommunications is a leading digital cellular system.

The court said in a statement that the sale of an additional GSM license could infringe the rights of existing mobile operators working in Kazakhstan. It didn’t provide further details.

The tender was already postponed from March 2004 on lack of demand.

According to a person in a state-owned telecommunications company who spoke to Dow Jones Newswires on condition of anonymity, the court made its ruling as a result of a complaint filed by the country’s largest mobile operator GSM-Kazakhstan, co-owned by Scandinavia’s TeliaSonera AB (TLSN) and Turkey’s
Turkcell (TKC).

GSM-Kazakhstan accused Kazakhstan’s state communications agency of not giving it the frequencies the company had already paid for, while at the same time allocating frequencies for a new operator, the person said.

GSM-Kazakhstan was established in 1998 and paid $67 million for 7.5 MgH frequency. However the government has only allocated 5 MgH, refusing to allocate more.

The government’s official reason was a lack of frequencies, as most of them are still controlled by the military. However, some commentators have said the government also didn’t want to see GSM-Kazakhstan expand further, as it already controls 80% of the market with 750,000 subscribers.

GSM-Kazakhstan declined comment. 

Dow Jones Newswires

Prime Minister meets representatives of TeliaSonera

On 26 May 2004, the Latvian Prime Minister, Indulis Emsis, met representatives of the Nordic telecommunications company TeliaSonera and heard out their opinion on the potential development directions of telecom industry in Latvia.

Head of the Latvian government noted that the possible privatisation of a part of the Latvian telecom industry is one of the most widely discussed issues among politicians and mass media as well. At the same time, Emsis pointed out, the public opinion still differs on the out-of-court settlement concluded by the previous government, therefore the controversy around this issue has not lessened.

TeliaSonera representatives admitted that they would like to continue negotiations with the Latvian party on privatisation of the state-owned shares of the Latvian telecom monopolist Lattelekom and mobile communications market leader LMT. However, Emsis and TeliaSonera did not agree on any particular plans of privatisation and reserved their rights to make any steps they may see proper in the future. The parties agreed that it is impossible to make any further steps, while the out-of-court settlement and the memorandum on cooperation remain classified, as well as the previous cooperation is not adequately assessed. Latvian and Nordic parties agreed to cooperate in declassification of the abovementioned documents.

The Cabinet of Ministers

Pasitraukdamas iš “Lietuvos telekomo” T. Parma išpardavė įmonės akcijas

Iš fiksuotojo ryšio rinkoje dominuojančios bendrovės “Lietuvos telekomas” pasitraukęs buvęs jos vadovas Tapijus Parma (Tapio Paarma) pardavė ir turėtas įmonės akcijas.

2004 metų pradžioje T. Parma turėjo tik 50 “Lietuvos telekomo” akcijų, skelbiama “Lietuvos telekomo” veiklos ataskaitoje.

Dar 2003-iųjų kovą T. Parma turėjo 246,8 tūkst. “Lietuvos telekomo” akcijų, kurios dabartine rinkos kaina buvo vertos daugiau kaip 450 tūkst. litų. 2002 metų pabaigoje T. Parma turėjo 160 tūkst. “Lietuvos telekomo” akcijų.

Beveik penkerius metus telekomui vadovavęs T. Parma nuo 2003 m. balandžio pabaigos atsistatydino iš “Lietuvos telekomo” generalinio direktoriaus pareigų, o iki metų pabaigos dirbo vyriausiuoju įmonės patarėju.

Vėliau T. Parma grįžo dirbti į Skandinavijos telekomunikacijų bendrovę “TeliaSonera”, kuri valdo kontrolinį “Lietuvos telekomo” akcijų paketą. Nuo šių metų pradžios “Lietuvos telekomui” vadovauja buvęs antro pagal dydį Lietuvos banko “Hansabankas” valdybos pirmininkas Arūnas Šikšta, kuris telekomo akcijų neturi.

“Lietuvos telekomo” akcijų T. Parma įsigijo 2000 metų birželį vykusio viešo jų pardavimo metu po 3,15 lito, o smunkant akcijų kainai didino jų skaičių.

Šiuo metu “Lietuvos telekomo” akcijos biržoje kainuoja apie 1,85 lito, o įmonės kapitalizacija yra apie 1,4 mlrd. litų.

ELTA

Contraversial out-of-court settlement between TeliaSonera and Latvia

On 26 May 2004, the Latvian Prime Minister, Indulis Emsis, met representatives of the Nordic telecommunications company TeliaSonera and heard out their opinion on the potential development directions of telecom industry in Latvia.

Head of the Latvian government noted that the possible privatisation of a part of the Latvian telecom industry is one of the most widely discussed issues among politicians and mass media as well. At the same time, Emsis pointed out, the public opinion still differs on the out-of-court settlement concluded by the previous government, therefore the controversy around this issue has not lessened.

TeliaSonera representatives admitted that they would like to continue negotiations with the Latvian party on privatisation of the state-owned shares of the Latvian telecom monopolist Lattelekom and mobile communications market leader LMT. However, Emsis and TeliaSonera did not agree on any particular plans of privatisation and reserved their rights to make any steps they may see proper in the future. The parties agreed that it is impossible to make any further steps, while the out-of-court settlement and the memorandum on cooperation remain classified, as well as the previous cooperation is not adequately assessed. Latvian and Nordic parties agreed to cooperate in declassification of the abovementioned documents.

www.mfa.gov.lv

Sonera offers compensation to targets of snooping

About 100 people being offered EUR 600 – 800; no offer to 7,000 secondary victims

The telecommunications service provider Sonera plans to offer compensation payments of EUR 600 – 800 each to employees whose telephone records were traced by the company’s security department.
Sonera calculates that about 100 people would be entitled to the money. All of them were allegedly the targets of surveillance by the company’s security department in 1997 – 2001. The security department is believed to have traced the mobile phone records of a number of employees in an effort to find a press leak.
Sonera hopes to agree on the compensation before the criminal trial on the issue begins in the late autumn.

The National Bureau of Investigation says that in its efforts to plug the leaks, the Sonera security department illegally uncovered communications information of about 7,000 people whose telephone numbers were revealed to the alleged snoopers because they were in contact with the prime targets of the surveillance.
However, Sonera feels that the appearance of individuals’ telephone numbers in the phone records of the Sonera personnel that were the main targets of the surveillance has not caused such deep emotional distress that paying compensation to the wider group would be necessary.

Sonera plans to send its compensation offer to the approximately 100 people who were the primary targets of the surveillance, in return for a commitment from those individuals to withdraw as plaintiffs in the case.
However, the settlement of the damages would not affect the actual criminal trial, in which about ten people who were executives and employees of Sonera at the time of the alleged snooping could face charges of violation of communications privacy.
Tiia Tuovinen, head of Sonera’s legal affairs unit, says that Sonera has studied previous court cases and statements by two experts in the field of monetary damages to find an appropriate level for the compensations.
There are no precedents for compensation for violation of communications privacy, but cases of eavesdropping and clandestine photography have brought monetary damages of between EUR 200 and 1,000.

Helsingin Sanomat

Sonera phone scandal: Police submit investigation material to prosecutors

NBI believe Sonera security department violated privacy of 56 people

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has completed its enquiries into the so-called main branch of the case involving suspected violation of the telecommunications privacy of employees of the telecoms company Sonera by a number of the company’s executives. Investigation into the 10 to 15 smaller branches of the case is to be completed sometime next month.
The investigation has focused on the activities of the company’s security department from the autumn of 2000 to the spring of 2001. Employees at the company’s security department are believed to have traced the telephone records of other employees in an attempt to find the source of leaks to Helsingin Sanomat and other media on sensitive matters within the company.
During the year and a half of investigations into the complicated case, the NBI has interrogated former Sonera CEO Kaj-Erik Relander and five other Sonera executives.
On Friday the transcripts were submitted to prosecutors, and the various interested parties are to receive copies next week.
Prosecutor Markku Pohjanoksa will consider possible charges in the case, and trials could begin sometime in the late autumn.

The police investigation suggests that the tracing of phone calls involved both mobile phone records and the records of calls to and from the desk telephones of employees at Sonera’s communications department. The snooping also allegedly extended to employee e-mails. Police say that the security department traced information on contacts that were taken, but not the content of the communications.
The company’s security department also tried to trace information on the location of specific mobile telephones. The investigation reveals that Sonera tried to locate one of its former executives, Harri Vatanen, on the basis of information from the base stations that were connected with his mobile phone.
Vatanen, the former head of the Sonera subsidiary SmartTrust, had fallen out with Sonera, which was trying to locate him in order to serve a subpoena for a court appearance.

The material produced in the investigation is extensive. In addition to the 1,200 pages of protocols, there are at least 1,000 pages of appendices. The need to submit copies to all 56 suspected victims of the phone record tracing activities has put logistical strains on the NBI.
In addition to the main branch of the case, the NBI is looking into 10 – 15 smaller related cases. The most notorious of these is the suspected tracing of the telephone records of Paavo Lipponen (SDP) when he was Prime Minister.

Helsingin Sanomat

TeliaSonera Picks Tyco

MORRISTOWN, N.J. — Tyco Telecommunications, a leading provider of international wholesale capacity, managed services and telecom equipment space on the Tyco Global Network (TGN), announced today that it has signed a contract for a 10Gb/s Trans-Atlantic Wavelength with TeliaSonera International Carrier, the leading carrier of Internet Protocol (IP) traffic in the Nordic and Baltic Sea regions, and fully owned by the TeliaSonera Group. Under the terms of the agreement, Tyco Telecommunications will provide the high bandwidth circuit on TGN to support TeliaSonera International Carrier’s increasing volume of voice, data and Internet traffic between Europe and the United States.

The high-capacity 10Gb/s circuit was provisioned to connect TeliaSonera International Carrier’s facility in London, with its U.S. Point of Presence (PoP) in New York City and is interconnected with TeliaSonera International Carrier’s other international circuits and PoPs. Tyco Telecommunications has provisioned the bandwidth on its TGN Trans-Atlantic cable, which connects New York City, and Wall, NJ in the U.S. with London, UK.

“TeliaSonera International Carrier selected Tyco Telecommunications based on TGN’s ability to provide a robust and scaleable high bandwidth Trans- Atlantic / European solution that could be easily integrated with our existing capacity,” stated Jean-Claude Geha, head of Networks at TeliaSonera International Carrier. “The TGN solution provides us with reliability, diversity and commercial flexibility.”

“We are pleased to have another world-class carrier, like TeliaSonera International Carrier, select TGN for their Trans-Atlantic and European connectivity needs,” states Eric Handa, Tyco Telecommunications’ Executive Director of Capacity Sales — EMEA North. “The ability of TGN to provide our customers with high Quality of Service, physical network diversity and commercial flexibility remains one of our strengths in today’s competitive market. TeliaSonera International Carrier joins a wide range of Telecom, Data and Enterprise clients transporting traffic on our Trans-Atlantic cable network at levels ranging from 155Mbs to multiple 10Gbs. We remain committed to satisfying the current and future global bandwidth needs of TGN customers around the globe.

LightReading.com

TeliaSonera accused of trying to stop Telenor

The Norwegian telecom operator Telenor accuses TeliaSonera of trying to stop Telenor’s entry on the Swedish broadband market. TeliaSonera’s subsidiary Skanova has refused Telenor access to 55-60 centrals, claiming that there is not room for Telenor’s ADSL equipment.

Dagens Næringsliv

TeliaSonera Launches Tele Finland

STOCKHOLM — TeliaSonera Finland is today announcing the next steps in its intensified market efforts. The aim is to increase the end-customer base in the Finnish market. The steps now being taken are the introduction of a new service provider, independent of TeliaSonera Finland, and a new subscription product for a specific target group.

Tele Finland – a new independent service provider: The new independent service provider, branded as Tele Finland Oy, will offer mobile subscriptions in TeliaSonera Finland’s network. Tele Finland Oy is fully owned by TeliaSonera Finland. Tele Finland will however have operational independence in order to maximize its agility. The company will operate under its own management and own brand, as its service concept differs from the TeliaSonera Finland service concept. The development of offerings, sales and marketing will be handled outside the TeliaSonera Finland organisation.

The company’s aim is to offer competitively priced basic mobile subscriptions by minimizing its administrative, marketing and delivery costs. Arto Heimonen, previously Vice President at Products and Services, TeliaSonera Finland, has been appointed as Managing Director of the company.

Tele Finland is expected to be an attractive alternative for the low price/basic service level oriented customers of all operators.

Subscription for SK Restaurant´s customers: Already on Friday, May 14 SK Restaurants launched a new mobile subscription targeted at the loyalty program members of the restaurant company. The mobile subscription is produced by TeliaSonera Finland, and marketed and branded by SK Restaurants.

LightReading.com