Ukraine telephone tokens

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Ukraine regained independence in 1991. The ministry of transportation became the regulatory and supervisory body for the telephone network. Its name was changed under pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych to ministry of transportation and communication in 2004. After his ouster, the name was changed to ministry of infrastructure in 2011

Kiev booth.jpg

From 1993, the executive organisation is ukrtelekom. Originally, it was a state agency. Its most urgent task was reform international calls, as these were at the time all routed through Moscow. In the period 1995 to 1996, 20 provincial (oblast) level telephone networks, the Krim and Sebastopol networks were re-structured as daughter companies of ukrtelekom.

Planning for privatisation of ukrtelekom (Ukranian) started in 2009, leading to a re-branding to ukrtelecom (English). After the departure of president Yanukovych, the company was turned into a joint stock company and sold to the highest of two bidders, ESU, a subsidiary of EPIC Invest, an Austrian investment company. ESU on-sold its shares to Ukrainian oligarch Rinat Akhmetov. President Zelensky has been in constant conflict with Akhmetov, who he suspects of corruption. Akhmetov denies the charges.

All issues are likely to date from the 1990s. Ukraine experienced hyperinflation until 1997, necessitating the use of tokens for coin operated machines, including public telephones. Between 1991 and 1996, when Dniprotelekom was the last local company integrated into Ukrtelekom, the issuers of telephone tokens were individual city administrations. National issues may date from 1993 to around 2000. By that time, public telephones were gradually converted to the use of chip cards.

Below is a list to city-issued tokens with the city names in Ukrainian (linked to Wikipedia) and Russian. The tokens use Russian spelling or the name in brackets. Many Russian telephone tokens remain unidentified. Possibly, some of these are Ukranian.