Russia’s largest mobile operator Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) says it will decide within two weeks whether to bid in Ukraine’s upcoming 3G licence auction. MTS’ wholly owned subsidiary Ukrainian Mobile Communications (UMC) is among the companies to have registered preliminary interest in a 3G concession alongside rivals Kyivstar, Astelit and URS. MTS’ President Leonid Melamed told reporters yesterday that the decision to participate will depend on conditions and pricing of the licence auction. Ukraine’s Communications Minister Viktor Bondar said Wednesday that the starting price of the licence is likely to be set at UAH500 million (USD105 million). State-run fixed line incumbent Ukrtelecom is the country’s sole holder of an UMTS licence, for which it paid UAH152 million (USD30 million) in December 2005.
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