26 Nov 2009 16:02


TBILISI. Nov 26 (Interfax) - Georgia's leading cellular service provider, Magticom, cannot implement a project started two years before for providing a wireless fixed network services throughout the country.

"The project, in which 75 million lari [around $45 million] has been invested, has grinded to a halt by fault of the Chinese company ZTE Corporation, which has turned out to be an unreliable partner," Magticom said in statement.

The statement said that, according to contract, ZTE should have gradually supplied Magticom with telephone units so that the Georgian company would be able to provide them to consumers.

"However, the Chinese company is not meeting its obligations. Of a planned 40,000 telephones, which should be received in Georgia by December 8, 2009, only 10,000 telephones have arrived. As a result, Magticom has carried a large financial and moral burden," the statement said.

ZTE has yet to specify the date of delivery for the remaining equipment. The Chinese company blames a third party, America's Qualcomm, which provides microcircuits for the telephone units. However, Magticom believes that this accusation cannot stand as the reason why the Chinese company was unable to fulfill its obligations.

Magticom has worked in Georgia sicne 1997 and is currently the largest telecom in the country in terms of subscribers (1.9 million persons, 50% of the market) and total revenue from cellular services.

Telcell Wireless LLC and IDC LLC own Magticom.