DUSHANBE, March 6, 2012, Asia-Plus  - OJSC Tajiktelecom (Tajikistan’s fixed-line telecommunications network) will install fixed telephone lines for more than 100,000 vulnerable families free of charge, Alibek Beknazarov, a chief specialist with Tajiktelecom, told Asia-Plus today.

According to him, Chinese-made telephone sets will be delivered to the country within the next few days and more than 50,000 vulnerable families will be provided with these sets free of charge.   

“The cost of one telephone set is 40.00 somoni (equivalent to US$8.40),” said Beknazarov.  “Distribution and installation of these telephone sets requires additional expenses.”

Meanwhile, Tajiktelecom raised the rate for calls from fixed telephone line on mobile phones by 1 diram starting from February 1, 2012 – from 2.50 diram to 3.50 diram.

Tajiktelecom justified the decision as resulting from increasing expenses.  Beknazarov noted they had raised the rate in order to repay a US$13 million loan provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).  “One of requirements of the Bank is to raise rates every half year,” he noted.