Telenor hopes to resolve dispute with Alfa after high-profile meeting

Norway's Telenor is "more hopeful" of settling its conflict with financial-industrial group Alfa Group in Russia after a meeting of the two countries' state officials, a Dow Jones report said.


Russian Information Technology and Communications Minister Leonid Reiman met with Norway's Industry and Trade Minister Odd Eriksen as part of wide bilateral trade talks mainly on crude and fish trade, the report said.


They also discussed Telenor's conflict with Alfa over their joint venture with Russia's second largest cellular operator, Vimpel Communications, entering the Ukrainian market, the report further said.


The report said the conflict has escalated to a point where Telenor had blocked VimpelCom's budget for 2006, and Telenor and Alfa were in several court cases against each other.


Both Reiman and Eriksen said they thought the conflict was an economic rather than a political one and was for the two companies to solve, the report said.