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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.

RUE Beltelecom 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.

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

More than 10.4 million subscribers in the republic use broadband Internet access.

In the Republic of Belarus three operators provide cellular mobile telecommunications services: Joint Venture LLC “Mobile TeleSystems”, Unitary Enterprise “Velcom”, CJSC “Belarusian Telecommunications Network” (Life:)). Cellular mobile telecommunication covers 98.2 percent of the territory of the republic with 99.9 percent of the population. At the beginning of the 2018 there were more than 11.4 million subscribers in the country.

There are approximately 3.1 million subscribers and users of fixed broadband and 7.2 million mobile broadband in the Republic of Belarus. Cellular mobile telecommunication network of UMTS (3G)  standard covers 95.2 percent of the territory with 99.9 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. Currently, services are provided in the city of Minsk, in all regional centers and major district centers. By the end of 2018 LTE technology will be implemented in 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.

393 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.

According to the Report of 2017 the Republic of Belarus is ranked 32nd in the ICT development index and is the CIS leader in the development of information and communication technologies. Compared to the previous year, the Republic of Belarus has managed to improve its access sub-index (+3 points) and use sub-index (+2 points). Moreover Belarus remains one of the global leaders in terms of the Human Development Index (5th). The Report indicates that due to the wise and persistent policy Belarus has created a well-developed infrastructure, which allows providing the population with quality and affordable fixed and mobile broadband services.  

According to the assessment of the ITU Broadband Development Commission the Republic of Belarus is ranked 21st in terms of the amount of fixed broadband subscribers among 196 countries, which took part in the study.

In the UN report 2016 the value of e-Government Readiness Index of the Republic of Belarus corresponds to 49th position out of 193 countries. In a similar report of the UN in 2012 Belarus was ranked 61st.

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; development of the information and communication infrastructure including by means of cloud technologies and implementation on its basis of new electronic services; implementation of ICT in the real sector of economy and social sphere including informatization of public health services, education, 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 market in 2015-2017 the Ministry of Communications and Informatization issued seven special permissions (licenses) to carry out the activities in the filed of postal services rendering with regard to mailing: GloBel24 LLC, Autolightexpress LLC, DPD Bel LLC, Nasha Pochta CJSC, SDEK-Bel LLC, Roscherk LLC, KyrierBy LLC.

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 the Republican Unitary Enterprise of Postal Communications “Belpochta”. An extensive network of post offices is responsive to all requirements of population, expanding the range of services rendered, including secondary services.

With the purpose of development of international cooperation Belpochta actively cooperates with CIS countries and far-abroad countries. In 2017 the Ministry of Communications and Informatization has implemented ten projects on joint production of postage stamps with the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Republic of Moldova, the Republic of India, Kyrgyzstan, the Republic of Poland, the Republic of Latvia, Romania, Russia and the Republic of Uruguay.

In order to popularize the postal online shop and promote the goods of domestic producers to foreign markets, in 2017 RUE Belpochta modernized the site of its online shop, translated its interface into English and indicated the value of goods in the currencies of the member states of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Ukraine. It is possible to pay for the purchased goods and their delivery by international mail in the following currencies: Russian ruble, US dollar and euro.

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, and the development of transnational network of logistics companies.