Kazakhtelecom plans to invest $200 mln in wireless subsidiary
ALMATY. February 22. KAZINFORM. Kazakhtelecom, Kazakhstan's national telecom operator, plans to invest US$200 million in its mobile services subsidiary Mobile Telecom Service over two years, Haluk Ege, the mobile operator's general director, said at a news conference Wednesday. Mobile Telecom Service, Kazakhstan's third GSM operator, began operating February 14 and expects to sign up at least 700,000 users by the end of the year and to provide services in 87 cities. The operator's network currently covers 30 cities and has a capacity of 1.2 million subscribers. Before Mobile Telecom Service began operating, the Kazakh GSM mobile market was split between two operators: KaR-Tel, a subsidiary of Russia's second largest mobile company VimpelCom; and GSM Kazakhstan, in which Kazakhtelecom owns a 49% stake, with the controlling stake jointly owned by TeliaSonera and Turkcell. Kazakhstan has a population of 15.5 million people, 45%-46% of which are mobile users, Kazinform refers to Prime-Tass.