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Telecommunications

Telecommunications industry of the Republic of Belarus includes enterprises, providing telephony, television and radio broadcasting, mobile and fixed Internet access services.

The Ministry of Communications and Informatisation of the Republic of Belarus is the central governing body, which is responsible for state regulation, coordination of work and information technologies development.

Operations and Analysis Center under the President of the Republic of Belarus is the independent regulator in the field of information and communication technologies.

Beltelecom RUE is the leading operator of the republic in the telecommunication services segment.

In 2016 “Smart Home” system is put into commercial operation, which should become an integral part of engineering infrastructure of newly constructed or renovated residential and public buildings, increasing the level of convenience.

Activities on development of multiservice telecommunication networks and implementation of the IMS-platform are actively carried out, thereby creating the conditions for provision to each customer of a variety of telecommunication services, starting from telephony, broadband Internet access to television services via IP protocol.

153 telecom operators function in the field of Internet access provision services.

More than 9.4 million subscribers use broadband Internet access.

In the Republic of Belarus three operators provide cellular mobile telecommunications services in GSM standard: Joint Venture LLC “Mobile TeleSystems”, Unitary Enterprise “Velcom”, CJSC “Belarusian Telecommunications Network”. Cellular mobile telecommunication covers 98.2 percent of the territory of the republic with 99.8 percent of the population. At the beginning of the 2017 there were more than 11.4 million subscribers in the country.

There are approximately 3 million subscribers and users of fixed broadband and 6.4 million mobile broadband in the Republic of Belarus. Cellular mobile telecommunication network of UMTS (3G)  standard covers 92 percent of the territory with 98.7 percent of the county population.

In December, 2015 JV Belarusian Cloud Technologies (beCloud trademark) launched the commercial operation of cellular mobile telecommunication networks of LTE standard (4G), which is the new technological stage in cellular mobile telecommunication networks development in the Republic of Belarus. By the end of 2018 LTE technology will be implemented in regional centers and other residential areas with the population more than 50 thousand people.

On February 1, 2012 in the Republic of Belarus the number portability service (MNP) was implemented, allowing a subscriber to keep his/her subscriber’s number when changing a cellular mobile telecommunication operator.

Currently the terrestrial broadcasting of television and sound programs is the most effective and technologically advanced way of data delivery to the population.

At the moment 285 television transmitters of different rate power ensure the terrestrial television broadcasting of public, regional and commercial television programs in the Republic of Belarus.

On the territory of the Republic of Belarus the terrestrial digital television broadcasting of the following public television programs is carried out: Belarus 1, National Television (ONT), Stolichnoe Televidenie (CTV), Mir, Russia-Belarus, NTV-Belarus, Belarus 2, Belarus 3, and Belarus 5.

On May 15, 2015 necessary measures on the country switching to the terrestrial digital television broadcasting were completed.

367 radio broadcasting transmitters of different wave spectra ensure terrestrial broadcasting of sound programs: “First National Channel of Belarusian Radio”, “Culture Radio Channel”, “Radius-FM”, “Stolitsa” and other programs (including regional and commercial programs).

The main goals of the television broadcasting organizations are the increase in the volume of television and sound programs broadcasting, expansion of transmitting equipment service area, services quality improvement.

On November 22, 2016 the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) presented another report “Measuring the Information Society – 2016”, according to which Belarus was ranked 31st out of 175 possible in the ranking of information and communication technologies development with ICT Development Index 7.18. Moreover, over the last 6 years Belarus has improved its position in the ranking by 19 positions (50th place in 2010 with ICT Development Index 5.30), firmly holding the leading position in the CIS region.

According to the assessment of the ITU Broadband Development Commission at the beginning of 2016 the Republic of Belarus was ranked 23rd in terms of the amount of fixed broadband subscribers among 193 countries, which took part in the study.

The priorities of the industry for 2016-2020 will be:

  • increasing ICT sector share in GDP;
  • increase in domestic demand for information technologies especially on the part of the public sector;
  • the development of the information and communication infrastructure;
  • with the help of cloud technologies;
  • the creation on its basis of new electronic services;
  • the implementation of ICT in the real sector of economy;
  • social sphere, including the informatization of public health services, education, and housing and communal services.

Postal communication is an integral part of the industrial and social infrastructure of the Republic of Belarus and operates within its territory to meet the needs of individuals, legal entities, and state administration authorities with regard to postal services.

With the purpose of liberalization of postal services in 2015-2016 the Ministry of Communication and Information issued four special permissions (licenses) to carry out the activities in the filed of postal services rendering with regard to mailing: OOO “GloBel24”, OOO “Autolightexpress”, OOO “DPD Bel”, ZAO “Nasha Pochta”.

From September 20 to October 7, 2016 Istanbul (Turkey) hosted the 26th Universal Postal Congress (hereinafter — Congress), during which the Republic of Belarus served as Vice-Chairman of the Congress for the first time, this was a confirmation of international recognition of the role of the Republic of Belarus with regard to postal communications development.

In the Republic of Belarus the function of mandatory provision of universal postal services throughout the territory of the Republic of Belarus is assigned to Republican Unitary Enterprise of Postal Communications “Belpochta”.

An extensive network of post offices allows to meet all requirements of population, expanding the range of services rendered, including secondary services. Currently, more than 50 types of secondary services are offered to customers.

With the purpose of development of international cooperation Belpochta actively cooperates with CIS countries. In 2016 the Ministry of Communications and Informatization has implemented four projects on joint production of postage stamps with Moldova, Russia, Azerbaijan and Pakistan.

The development of postal services in the Republic of Belarus will be implemented in the face of increasing competition due to liberalization of local market of postal services, significant change in the international postal market due to the global development of the Information Society, displacement of the traditional forms of documents and goods delivery, and the development of transnational network of logistics companies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The telecommunications industry of the Republic of Belarus includes enterprises providing services of telephony, television and radio broadcasting, mobile and fixed Internet access. The Ministry of Communications and Informatisation of the Republic of Belarus is the central governing body, responsible for state regulation, co-ordination of work and information technologies development.

The Operations and Analysis Centre, under the President of the Republic of Belarus, is the independent regulator in the field of information and communication technologies. Beltelecom RUE is the leading operator of the Republic in the telecommunication services segment.

Activities continue to develop multiservice telecommunication networks and to implement the IMS-platform, creating conditions to provide each customer with the whole complex of services, from telephony and broadband Internet access to television services, via IP protocol.

In the Republic of Belarus, three operators provide cellular mobile telecommunications services to GSM standard: Joint Venture LLC Mobile TeleSystems, Unitary Enterprise Velcom, and CJSC Belarusian Telecommunications Network (Life:)). Cellular mobile telecommunication covers 98.0 percent of the territory of the Republic, and 99.9 percent of the population. In early 2016, there were over 11.4 million subscribers in the country. 160 telecom operators function in the field of Internet access provision. Over 7.8 million subscribers use broadband Internet access in the Republic. There are approximately 2.8 million users of fixed broadband and 5.1 million mobile broadband users. The UMTS standard cellular mobile telecommunication network (3G) covers 95.7 percent of the territory, providing access to 52.9 percent of the country’s population. 3G services are ensured across Minsk, regional centres and large cities.

December 17th, 2015, saw the launch of commercial operation of LTE standard cellular mobile telecommunication networks (4G): a new stage in cellular mobile telecommunication. In 2016, the technology joined regional cities and, by 2020, will penetrate regional centres and other residential areas with populations of at least 50,000.

On February 1st, 2012, the number portability service (MNP) launched in Belarus, allowing a subscriber to keep his/her subscriber number when changing between cellular mobile telecommunication operators.

At present, terrestrial broadcasting of television and sound is the most effective and technologically advanced form of data delivery. There are 282 television transmitters (of various strengths), ensuring terrestrial television broadcasting of public, regional and commercial television programmes across Belarus.

Terrestrial digital television broadcasting takes place via Belarus 1, National Television (ONT), Stolichnoe Television (CTV), Mir, Russia-Belarus, NTV-Belarus, Belarus 2, Belarus 3, and Belarus 5.

On May 15th, 2015, the necessary measures were completed to allow the country to switch to terrestrial digital television broadcasting. Over 338 radio broadcast transmitters (of various wave spectra) ensure terrestrial broadcasting of sound: the First National Channel of Belarusian Radio, the Culture Radio Channel, Radius-FM, Stolitsa and other programmes (including regional and commercial programmes). National programmes are broadcast to neighbouring countries, to the CIS and beyond.

The main goals of television broadcasting organisations are increased volumes of television and sound broadcasting, expansion of area covered, and improved quality.

On November 30th, 2015, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) presented its report on Measuring the Information Society. Belarus was ranked 36th out of 167 states for its information and communication technologies, with an ICT Development Index of 7.18. Over the last five years, Belarus has risen fourteen positions (from 50th place in 2010, with an ICT Development Index of 5.30). It firmly leads within the CIS.

According to the ITU Broadband Development Commission, in early 2015, the Republic of Belarus was ranked 25th in terms of the amount of fixed broadband subscribers and 23rd for the number of households having Internet access, among 195 countries participating.

Priorities for the branch for 2016-2020 include:

  • increased ICT sector share in GDP;
  • enhanced domestic demand for information technologies, especially on the part of the public sector;
  • development of information and communication infrastructure, including with the help of cloud technologies;
  • creation of new electronic services;
  • implementation of ICT in the private sector of the economy and social sphere — including informatisation of public health services, education, and housing and communal services;
  • ICT application to postal services, including e-commerce, and the erasing of barriers to market access.