Turkmenistan to privatise Turkmen Telecom?

Turkmenistan to privatise Turkmen Telecom?

Turkmenistan is to launch a privatisation of its state-owned assets in the coming months, which could see part or all of state-owned operator Turkmen Telecom sold off.

Local media quoted Turkmenistan’s president Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov at the weekend, as saying that he had signed an order to approve Turkmenistan’s privatisation programme for 2013 to 2016 with the sell-off of some state companies to start at the beginning of this year.

A government official told Reuters that sell-offs would primarily target transport, communications and construction assets.

It was not clear whether foreign investors will be able to take part in the privatisation process.

Turkmenistan’s telecoms services are considered the least developed of all CIS countries, according to research firm BuddeComm.

The lack of growth in telecoms services is attributed to a large extent to the slow development of the private sector and state control of economic activities.

Turkmen Telecom is the country’s main provider of public telephone, email and internet services, and provides mobile services in competition with MTS Turkmenistan.

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