France Telecom launches new backbone PoP in Czech Republic

14 July 2003 Paris Lightwave Europe--France Telecom is to launch a new backbone Point of Presence in Prague by first quarter 2004 to respond to exponential demand for telecommunication services from local companies and to support strong economic growth in the Czech Republic.

14 July 2003 Paris--France Telecom is to launch a new backbone Point of Presence in Prague by first quarter 2004 to respond to exponential demand for telecommunication services from local companies and to support strong economic growth in the Czech Republic.

The new PoP will provide Czech carriers and ISPs with direct access to competitive transit and interconnection services, as well as extending the coverage provided to worldwide customers of France Telecom's Open Transit wholesale solutions.

Eric Le Bihan, France Telecom's Vice President of Sales and Support (Europe) for the wholesale market said, "The Czech Republic is set for impressive growth and is a strategic market for our global wholesale operations. We're delighted to bring our capacity services closer to carriers and ISPs here and in neighboring Central European countries."

Jaroslav Hubata-Vacek, Director of the French-Czech Chamber of Commerce, said, "We are very pleased that France Telecom has decided to involve the Czech Republic in its development strategy, following the group's investments in Slovakia and Poland.

"The Czech telecommunication market ranks among the most dynamic in Central Europe and France Telecom's decision is of crucial importance at a time when the country is preparing its early entrance into the European Union and is facing increasing demand for high capacity data transmission."

France Telecom group is already providing a full scope of services through Equant, the industry leader in data and IP services for multinational businesses. Present in five Czech Republic cities, Equant has been serving major multinational companies in the country for more than seven years.

France Telecom believes that this latest move will position it as an attractive partner for carriers and ISPs in the "high-potential" Czech telecom sector and provides a closer access point for other customers in Central Europe.

In addition to the PoP in Prague, France Telecom will also open a PoP in Warsaw, Poland during first quarter 2004. With these two new customer access points, the company will be well-positioned to satisfy demand for high-capacity, quality transit from competitive carriers and ISPs in Central Europe as broadband and next-generation mobile services take off.

The announcement was made to an audience of 60 key members of the Czech telecommunications community, including David Stadnik, President of the Czech telecom regulation board, as well as representatives of all three Czech Associations of fixed and mobile telecommunications providers. Also present were the President and Director of the French-Czech Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

France Telecom's backbone currently stretches 140,000-km over the five continents. Its ring-architecture terrestrial network has progressively extended to 62 PoPs in 11 countries in Europe, 24 in North America and four in Asia. Interconnection with further European cities (up to 250 in total) is possible via France Telecom affiliates.

In addition, the backbone integrates scalable capacity on major undersea cables such as TAT-14, TAT 12/13, SAT-3/WASC/SAFE, SEA-ME-WE 3 and Eurafrica. For a complete global footprint, France Telecom also has access to satellite capacity.

France Telecom
France Telecom is one of the world's leading telecommunications carriers, with 111.7 million customers on the five continents (220 countries and territories) and consolidated operating revenues of 46.6 billion euro for 2002.

Through its major international brands, including Orange, Wanadoo, Equant and GlobeCast, France Telecom provides businesses, consumers and other carriers with a complete portfolio of solutions that spans local, long-distance and international telephony, wireless, Internet, multimedia, data, broadcast and cable TV services.

The company is the second-largest wireless operator and Internet access provider in Europe, and a world leader in telecommunications solutions for multinational corporations. France Telecom (NYSE: FTE) is listed on the Paris and New York stock exchanges.

www.francetelecom.com

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