OREANDA-NEWS. February 6, 2012. Sistema JSFC (LSE: SSA), the largest diversified public financial corporation in Russia and the CIS, today announces that the Supreme Court of India issued a judgment on February 2, 2012 revoking 122 telecom licenses of 11 telecom operators, including 21 of the 22 licenses held by Sistema Shyam TeleServices Ltd (SSTL), a subsidiary of Sistema that provides cellular services in India under MTS brand.

The order was issued on the grounds that these licenses were not granted in accordance with required procedures by the Department of Telecommunications. The court has further directed the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), India’s top telecom regulatory body, to make fresh recommendations on the granting of 2G licenses and the re-allocation of spectrum via auction within four months by the Department of Telecommunications (DOT).

Sistema, by way of its investments in SSTL, has fully demonstrated its commitment to its Indian operations and is very disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision. In essence, Sistema and SSTL are being penalised for acting in good faith and in reliance on the appropriateness of the procedures established by India’s telecommunications authorities.  Sistema therefore looks forward to a clear, transparent, and equitable policy decision on these matters by the Indian government.

To safeguard its interests, Sistema and SSTL will contest this order by pursuing all available legal remedies. In the meantime, Indian operations will remain business as usual for SSTL, a national telecom operator serving more than 15 million customers, employing over 3500 employees, and with investments of over USD  2 billion.