MTS Uzbekistan Assets Transferred to State-Owned Telco

 Uzbekistan’s state-owned Uzbektelecom has acquired the assets of the local mobile network, MTS-Uzbekistan following its forced bankruptcy last year.

Local authorities transferred Uzdunrobita’s (MTS) assets to Uzbektelecom. It’s not clear when the legal transfer of ownership took place. Uzbektelecom will monitor the condition of the equipment of the cellular operator, but whether the company plans to use the equipment is not clear.

Uzdunrobita, MTS’s wholly owned subsidiary in Uzbekistan, was declared bankrupt by the government in an action that is being contested by MTS. Attempts to sell the assets in three auctions did not get any bidders — no doubt put off by the ongoing legal challenge to the sale.

MTS has repeatedly stated that the claims of the Uzbek authorities and actions in Uzbekistan, which resulted in the initiation of bankruptcy proceedings and attempts to sell Uzdunrobita’s assets, have no legal or factual basis.

MTS has a claim pending against the government at the International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).

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