UPDATE 1-Russia eyes import duty on cells without GLONASS

* Duty seen at around 25 pct, to be imposed by 2012

* Duty meant to encourage cell producers to use GLONASS

(Adds background)

MOSCOW, Oct 27 (BestGrowthStock) – Russia may introduce duties of
around 25 percent by 2012 on the import of mobile phones without
the GLONASS navigation system, as part of efforts to encourage
adoption of the technology.

“It will happen no later than 2012 … It will be around 25
percent, so the consumer can feel the difference, a little bit,”
Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov told reporters on Wednesday.

Russia has been developing GLONASS, its answer to the U.S.
Global Positioning System (GPS), since 1976. The state has spent
$2 billion in the last 10 years on the project and the system is
expected to be fully operational this year.

The proposed duty on phones with GPS and not GLONASS aims at
encouraging leading international mobile phone producers to mass
produce devices with the Russian system.

“We will levy (the duty) if the phone only has GPS. It is
not so much an enforcement as an encouragement,” said Ivanov,
adding that the final decision on the duties will be taken by
the Trade and Industry Ministry.

In August, the head of the state GLONASS operator, said
firms such as Nokia (NOK1V.HE: ), Motorola (MOT.N: ) and Qualcomm
(QCOM.O: ) were in talks with Russian chip manufacturers about the
mass production of handheld devices enabled with both GLONASS
and GPS. [ID:nLDE67A0JC].
(Reporting by Anastasia Teterevlyova; Writing by Jessica
Bachman and Toni Vorobyova; Editing by David Holmes)

UPDATE 1-Russia eyes import duty on cells without GLONASS