The Russian telecom market is the largest in Europe, supported by a population of about 143.5 million. The market is dominated by the western regions where the main cities and economic centres are concentrated. All sectors have been liberalised, with competition most prevalent in Moscow and St Petersburg. The former holding company for Russia’s incumbent telecom operators, Svyazinvest, has emerged as Rostelecom, with most regional players absorbed into the operator. Rostelecom subsequently merged its mobile business with Tele2 Russia, which launched mobile services in the important Moscow market in late 2015.
Telcos continue to deploy and modernise fixed-line network infrastructure to offer improved broadband services as well as a range of IP-delivered content. The government is investing billions of Rubles in a 200,000km telecom network which will provide a broadband service of at least 10Mb/s to thousands of underserved villages. Rostelecom has been contracted to undertake and manage the work.
Russia has also emerged as one of Europe’s fastest growing markets for fibre-based broadband, while there is also an n emphasis on DOCSIS3.1.
The mobile market is also the largest in Europe, with the number of subscriptions having passed 232 million. Several mobile network operators are active, although the market is dominated by four major operators (MTS, VEON, Tele2 Russia/Rostelecom and MegaFon). These have expanded their footprints widely through the acquisition of smaller regional service providers. Mobile SIM card penetration is high, though actual mobile user penetration is lower due to the popularity of multiple SIM card use. The extensive deployment of LTE infrastructure is supporting growth opportunities through mobile broadband and data services, which make up a growing proportion of overall mobile revenue. Investments in LTE-A technologies have further boosted network capabilities, while operators are also partnering with vendors to prepare for 5G.
This report provides an overview of Russia’s fixed-line telecom and IT markets. It includes information on key regulatory developments and on national and international infrastructure, as well as an assessment on telcos’ financial and operating performance. The report also covers the fixed-line and fixed-wireless broadband markets, analysing development in the cable, DSL and fibre segments. In addition the report reviews the mobile market, covering regulatory developments, the major mobile operators including MegaFon, VEON, MTS and Tele2 Russia, as well as technologies and mobile data, content and applications, and a variety of updated financial and operational statistics.
Ministry of Communications supporting plans for fibre link between the UK and Japan via Murmansk and Vladivostok;
Akado Telecom continues DOCSIS3.1 trials;
Rostelecom’s fibre subscriber base broaches 7.9 million by September 2017;
MTS and VEON invest RUB2 billion on 4,500km fibre infrastructure;
MegaFon collaborates with utility EuroSibEnergo using power lines for fibre-optic network in Siberia;
Roaming charges to end by mid-2018;
Telenor again scales down shareholding in VEON;
Tele2 Russia sets up an MVNE service;
MegaFon reports data rates of up to 35Gb/s in 5G trials, deploys CA technology to deliver gigabit LTE-A;
MegaFon and Rostelecom cooperate to develop 5G networks;
SCRF turns down MNO requests for spectrum to trial 5G technologies;
VEON contracts Huawei to trial LTE-A and 5G technologies;
Ericsson and MTS sign agreement developing 5G services;
Report update includes telcos’ operating and financial data to Q3 2017, regulator’s market data to September 2017, recent market developments.
Companies mentioned in this report:
TransTeleCom, ER-Telecom, MTS, Rostelecom, PeterStar, Synterra Telecom, Comstar, Volga Telecom, VEON (VimpelCom), Summa Telecom, MetroMAX, Comstar, Yota, Virgin Connect, Enforta, Golden Telecom, MegaFon, Tele2 Russia, Skylink, SMARTS Group, Uralsvyazinform.