The two-year programme from Ukrtelecom and Iskratel is financed by Slovenian banks
Kranj, Slovenia, and Kyiv, Ukraine, 10 February 2022 – The first €3 million financial investment as part of a €12 million national fibre rollout programme set to bridge the digital divide across Ukraine has been spent. Ukrtelecom’s partnership with Iskratel and Slovenian banks including state owned SID banka will help expand connectivity to more than 1.3 million people across Ukraine.
The investment is part of the €12 million fibre network expansion programme that was launched last year to provide connectivity to 300 localities in various Ukrainian regions. The scheme highlights the potential of international partnerships to provide improved financial conditions than those commercial banks are typically able to offer. The financial partnership with the banks offers long-term capital on the international market and is part of the banks’ efforts to enable Slovenian companies to expand their businesses to markets outside of the European Union (EU) under competitive conditions.
“This marks the first step of our deployment of fibre infrastructure in Ukraine with an eye towards 60% growth in our fibre broadband subscriptions and revenues. Our cooperation with our Slovenian partners demonstrates that Ukrtelecom can source long-term capital on international markets on competitive rates and implement large-scale infrastructure projects,” Ukrtelecom CEO Yuriy Kurmaz said. “Owing to this effective financial partnership, we continue to accelerate the development of a modern digital telecom infrastructure in Ukraine, bridging the digital divide in the country and enabling the use of digital services in people’s daily routines.”
The fibre network expansion programme addresses both rural and urban areas in the country. It uses modern certified telecommunications equipment, which is assembled in Slovenia at Iskratel’s production centres, giving customers access to Internet speeds of up to 1 Gbps, IPTV, and other IP-based services.
“Together with Ukrtelecom and our Slovenia financial partners, the fibre network rollout programme will bring greater opportunities to hundreds of communities in various regions across Ukraine,” said Iskratel CEO Robert Kuzmič. “This first investment underscores our proficiency in providing attractive financial conditions and managing complex projects end-to-end and our intention to bring gigabit-capable connectivity to more than 1.3 million people and 530,000 homes.”
In 2021, Ukrtelecom deployed more than 13,600 km of new fibre-optic networks and expanded its GPON infrastructure in 1,200 cities and villages. The modernised networks have unlocked the full potential of digital services in the public and private sectors.
“Promoting digital transformation both at the level of individual companies and at the level of public infrastructure in Slovenia and abroad is one of SID banka’s key priorities. The Iskratel and Ukrtelecom project was assessed as a suitable export project for SID banka’s financing,” said SID banka President of the Management Board Damijan Dolinar. “I am pleased to see Slovenian banks financing the project together, which proves that banks are successfully cooperating for the benefit of Slovenian companies. Furthermore, SID banka continuously collaborates with Slovenian companies like Iskratel, and provides them with suitable financing opportunities, as well as insurance of their ambitious business plans abroad.”