The Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) of Russia considered the petition of Russian telecom operators and preliminarily approved a cooperation agreement for the construction and launch of fifth-generation 5G cellular networks.
According to local media reports, the Russian federal competition watchdog okayed the petition filed by Rostelecom, Bashinformsvyaz, VimpelCom (Beeline trademark), and MegaFon. The key condition of the approval is equal access to bands by all mobile market players.
The operators have yet to develop and agree with the antimonopoly authority on the conditions for the use of infrastructure, the sharing of radio frequencies, and the conditions for the provision of infrastructure for virtual telecom operators (MVNO).
The access to the released radio frequency spectrum for the construction of 5G networks and the subsequent provision of mobile radiotelephone communication services on 5G networks is an opportunity to provide new generation communication services on the territory of the Russian Federation, said FAS.
The Russian Ministry of Digital Development, Communications, and Mass Media has said that they would like to see the venture as a single piece of infrastructure that would create one network for all telecom companies.
In December 2020, the FAS approved the petition of Rostelecom, MTS, Vimpelcom (Beeline), and Megafon to create the 5G joint venture.
The reports also quoted Evgeny Novikov, Advisor to the Deputy Head of the Moscow Department of Information Technologies, saying that shortly industrial testing grounds would be launched in the capital to study the possibilities of fifth-generation communications.