Ministry for Transport and Communication Has No WiFi Policy


YEREVAN, JULY 26. ARMINFO. There is no definite policy of the Armenian
Ministry for Transport and Communication to the mobile radio modem
(Wi-Fi) access to Internet at present. Director of the largest
provider company in Armenia, Arminco, Andranik Aleksanyan told

He said that beginning from 2003, the given issue has been a subject
for discussion at several sessions of the IT Development Council
Support (ITDSC) initiated by ITDSC head M.Marosyan. The ministry
submitted a letter to ITDSC that small-capacity WI-FI radio modems
(for example, based on the technology Intel Centrino) can be used
without a relevant permission by the ministry, it is necessary to have
just a certificate on conformity to radio modem equipment. However,
Telecommunications Center CJSC of the Ministry for Transport and
Communications of Armenia is guided with other documents, and in order
to use Intel Centrino technology, it is necessary to calculate
electromagnetic compatibility for each radio modem and to pay for the
services on support of radio-air for the given device.

Job prices for mobile communication on the Intel Centrino technology
have not been established yet. Moreover, in conformity with the
acknowledged practice, it necessary to register all the radiant
devices (except cellular phones) at the TC CSJC and to pay for a
“permission to import.” He said that such an approach contradicts to
the letter of the minister for transport and communications to the
ITDCS, where Intel Centrino is allowed for use without a special
permission of TC CJSC. Such a situation is possible only if the CJSC
charges payment for use of the state property, the spectrum of radio
frequencies. Aleksanyan said that the world practice supposes levying
of the tax for the use of the radio spectrum. As a result, the TC CJSC
has no rights to prevent the illegal activity with use of the radio
spectrum, as it is not a state body. As any CJSC, the TC pursues
profits and development of information technologies is not prior for
it, the director said.

The ministry is an individual property of TC CJSC, which is
responsible for develoment of IT technologies in Armenia and
introduction of WI-FI technologies in Armenia. The contradiction is
supposed to be liquidated due to the newly established Regulating Body
in the sphere of telecommunications after adoption of a new Law on
Communications by the National Assembly of Armenia (in the first
reading in 2003).

At present radio modem can be purchased without permission of the TC
CJSC in any specialized shop, which violates the resolution of the
Armenian Government on the order of purchase of radio emissive
equipment. As a result, the orgnaizations legally importing radio
modems pay for the service of the TC CJSC, while others trade without
a relevant permission and gain super profits. Such a situation casts
doubt on the ability of UNICOMP company to issue and sale computers
with use of Intel Centrino technology, as it requires a license for
issue of radio emissive equipment and a permission for use of the
radio spectrum when producing computers, as well as registration of
each computer at the TC CJSC and its certification by a special
Certifying Body (there are at least two such bodies in Armenia
operating in conformity with the Law on Certification of Armenia) or
at the State Standard. This situation casts doubt on the possibility
of legal introduction of Wi-Fi technology in Armenia.