CONFLICT AMONG NATURAL MONOPOLIST AND PROVIDERS FINALLY SETTLED

arminfo
2008-05-31 21:41:00

ArmInfo. The conflict among the natural telecommunications monopolist,
"ArmenTel" Company, and Armenia's Internet-providers has been finally
settled. As Director on Operations of "ArmenTel" Company (Beeline
brand) Alexander Birman told ArmInfo, the relevant Memorandum of
Cooperation was signed on May 22. The text of the Memorandum has
been sent to the market regulatory agencies - RA Public Services
Regulatory Commission and RA State Commission for Protection of
Economic Competition.

To recall, on April 30, a number of Internet-providers of Armenia
prepared an appeal to the republic's market regulatory agencies,
containing a demand to settle the situation in the telecommunications
market caused by the aggressive price policy of "ArmenTel", expressed
in the fixed different prices on Internet-communication for corporate
and private users. Along with it, the providers limited the access
to the Internet-communication for their clients - "ArmenTel"
subscribers. On May 12, ArmenTel" spread a statement among the
providers, expressing readiness to start negotiations on the situation
settlement. As A. Birman said, the Memorandum contains a provision on
creation of three working groups. One of them will be engaged in the
general issues of Internet-market functioning, that is, determination
of the peer- to-peer rules or traffic exchange among the providers,
the issues of providers' liabilities, etc.

The other group will deal with the issues of "direct wires" or
"physical" channel from ATS to the user. "The problem of determining
the "direct wire" term had to be solved here". The point is that
ten years ago, when PSRC approved the rules of using "direct wires"
and the prices, the section of the wire among the telephone stations
and accruals for that fell from the filed of vision. This is the case
when everything new is old again: we have just recovered the earlier
existing rules", A. Birman said. The third group will be engaged in the
rules of using DSL- communication. As A. Birman said, the discussions
on development of an optimal business- model are at the working stage.

Technical Director of the biggest Internet-provider of Armenia,
"Arminco" Company, Head of the first working group Grigor Saghyan told
ArmInfo that the tasks set should be fulfilled within the strictly
defined terms. "If they are not fulfilled within a fortnight, the
Memorandum cannot be called efficient", G. Saghyan said. He added that
determination of the telecommunications network structure and precise
differentiation of prices for use of the network as such and use of
the Internet-communication within its frames remains the key problem.