6 Jul 2022 10:25

MTS joins Rostelecom, MegaFon, Vimpelcom in JV to develop 5G

MOSCOW. July 6 (Interfax) - Russia's leading mobile provider, MTS has acquired an equity stake in New Digital Solutions LLC, a joint venture to develop 5G technology in Russia formed by telecom providers Rostelecom, MegaFon and Vimpelcom.

MTS has acquired a 25% stake in the venture, data from the Unified State Register of Legal Entities showed. Rostelecom subsidiary Bashinformsvyaz, MegaFon and Vimpelcom each retained 25% stakes.

MTS's press service confirmed to Interfax that the company has joined the venture. MTS senior management had repeatedly said that the company intended to join the venture.

New Digital Solutions, founded in 2018, was initially conceived as a joint venture between MegaFon and Rostelecom to build a common 5G network, but the configuration of the venture was subsequently changed. MegaFon, Rostelecom and Vimpelcom signed an agreement on the creation of New Digital Solutions in June 2021.

The goal of the venture is to organization testing for electromagnetic compatibility, conduct research on frequencies that can be used to build 5G networks, and implement measures to free up the radio frequency spectrum from existing equipment with various applications in bands suitable for 5G networks, including but not limited to 694-790 MHz, 3.4-3.8 GHz, 4.4-4.99 GHz and 24.25-29.5 GHz.

Last November, the State Commission for Radio Frequencies allocated New Digital Solutions bands in the 4400-4990 MHz range for testing 5G technology for two years. However, the commission did not allow the venture to test the bands 4555-4630 MHz and 4990-5000 MHz, which are used by Russian security agencies.