Turkcell says 10% of mobile infrastructure in Ukraine disabled

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Workers participate in efforts to repair a road and damages caused due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Odesa, Ukraine, March 23, 2022. REUTERS/Igor Tkachenko

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ISTANBUL, March 24 (Reuters) - Turkish telecoms operator Turkcell (TCELL.IS), one of three main operators in Ukraine, said around 10% of its infrastructure in the country had been disabled by Russia's invasion, but added there was no damage to its central network.

While Russia has failed to capture a single major Ukrainian city a month after it launched its invasion, which Moscow calls a "special military operation", the fighting has left cities in ruins and destroyed critical infrastructure.

Turkcell, which operates under the name "lifecell" in Ukraine, said in a stock exchange statement on Wednesday that around 10% of its 9,000 base stations in Ukraine were disabled, adding there had been no casualties among its employees.

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The company said it had provided the necessary equipment to maintain operations and established backup data centres in Lviv in western Ukraine and some neighbouring nations, adding 45% of its retail stores in the country remained open.

Turkcell's operations in Ukraine comprised 7.8% of its 35.9 billion lira ($2.42 billion) revenue in 2021. They made up about 10% of its profits before interest, depreciation and tax.

NATO member Turkey shares a maritime border with Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea and has good ties with both. While being critical of Russia's invasion and supporting Ukraine, Ankara has also launched mediation efforts and called for a ceasefire.

($1 = 14.8150 liras)

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Reporting by Can Sezer; Writing by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Editing by Daren Butler and Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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