Nortel
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Nortel

June 08, 2005 04:00 ET

Liberia's Cellcom Provides Nationwide Mobile Communications With Nortel Solution

MONROVIA, Liberia--(CCNMatthews - Jun 8, 2005) -

Nortel (NYSE:NT)(TSX:NT) has deployed the first phase of a national mobile network for Liberian operator Cellcom, bringing affordable and reliable wireless services to parts of the country for the first time. The network, based on Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) technology, significantly enhances the country's telecommunication infrastructure.

Nortel's wireless networking solutions and related professional services will help bring mobile services to subscribers in Greater Monrovia, Harbel, Kabkata, Buchanan and Robertsfield, the largest urban areas in Liberia. The first services were launched in November 2004. Cellcom plans to expand its coverage to the entire country by the end of 2006.

"For the first time Liberians will experience the reliability and quality of a true mobile network," said Willis D. Knuckles, Jr., chairman, board of directors, Cellcom Telecommunications Inc. "Our aim is to connect Liberia nationwide and give the country a 21st century technology. This mobile network infrastructure marks the single biggest investment in Liberia's economy since the induction of the National Transitional Government of Liberia in 2003."

Liberia experienced more than 20 years of civil war until a peace deal was implemented in 2003 when the transitional government was put in place after President Charles Taylor was exiled.

"Affordable wireless services such as those offered by Cellcom will help boost economic activity and have a profound impact by connecting people and narrowing the digital divide," said Steve Pusey, president, EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa), Nortel. "Nortel is focused on enhancing individuals' lives. In Africa that means working closely with companies such as Cellcom to provide mobile services that have a critical impact on the local economy."

Features offered to Liberian GSM users include a US$0.20 per minute rate for local calls with per second billing, making mobile services more affordable to local users. Cellcom is also introducing a virtual phone system, allowing anyone to access the network either wirelessly or through wireline services. Individual subscriber identity module (SIM) cards with 100 minutes worth of local calls can be used in any Cellcom public phone to make calls or retrieve messages. Cellcom is also providing a full e-mail service to and from its mobile phones.

Mobile subscriber numbers in Africa have increased by over 1000 percent between 1998 and 2003 to reach 51.8 million, according to the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). Mobile user numbers have passed those of fixed line, which stood at 25.1 million at the end of 2003. With the Nortel Cellcom deployment, the Liberian public will now join the more than 1.2 billion GSM subscribers worldwide.

Nortel supplied Cellcom with GSM/GPRS wireless core network and radio access equipment, including Mobile Switching Center, Home Location Register (HLR) and advanced Base Transceiver Stations (BTS). This includes the BTS 12000, which is designed to deliver additional capacity within a GSM/GPRS network while positioning operators to drive lower costs and to offer advanced wireless services based on third generation (3G) EDGE (Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution) technology. Nortel is also providing professional services and support, including project management, commissioning and training.

Nortel's experience in Africa spans more than 20 years. Nortel has served leading enterprise and service provider customers including Telecom Egypt and SITA South Africa. In March 2003, Nortel also launched Africa's first CDMA2000 1X wireless network for Nigerian operator Multi-Links.

Nortel has designed, installed and launched more than 300 wireless networks in over 70 countries. Nortel was the industry's first supplier with wireless networks operating in all advanced radio technologies (GSM/GPRS/EDGE, CDMA2000 1X and 1xEV-DO, UMTS and WLAN) and is the only end-to-end provider of all next generation wireless solutions.

About Nortel

Nortel is a recognized leader in delivering communications capabilities that enhance the human experience, ignite and power global commerce, and secure and protect the world's most critical information. Serving both service provider and enterprise customers, Nortel delivers innovative technology solutions encompassing end-to-end broadband, Voice over IP, multimedia services and applications, and wireless broadband designed to help people solve the world's greatest challenges. Nortel does business in more than 150 countries. For more information, visit Nortel on the Web at www.nortel.com. For the latest Nortel news, visit www.nortel.com/news.

Certain information included in this press release is forward-looking and is subject to important risks and uncertainties. The results or events predicted in these statements may differ materially from actual results or events.

Factors which could cause results or events to differ from current expectations include, among other things: the outcome of regulatory and criminal investigations and civil litigation actions related to Nortel's restatements and the impact any resulting legal judgments, settlements, penalties and expenses could have on Nortel's results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and any related potential dilution of Nortel's common shares; the findings of Nortel's independent review and implementation of recommended remedial measures; the outcome of the independent review with respect to revenues for specific identified transactions, which review will have a particular emphasis on the underlying conduct that led to the initial recognition of these revenues; the restatement or revisions of Nortel's previously announced or filed financial results and resulting negative publicity; the existence of material weaknesses in Nortel's internal control over financial reporting and the conclusion of Nortel's management and independent auditor that Nortel's internal control over financial reporting is ineffective, which could continue to impact Nortel's ability to report its results of operations and financial condition accurately and in a timely manner; the impact of Nortel's and NNL's failure to timely file their financial statements and related periodic reports, including Nortel's inability to access its shelf registration statement filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC); ongoing SEC reviews, which may result in changes to Nortel's and NNL's public filings; the impact of management changes, including the termination for cause of Nortel's former CEO, CFO and Controller in April 2004; the sufficiency of Nortel's restructuring activities, including the work plan announced on August 19, 2004 as updated on September 30, 2004 and December 14, 2004, including the potential for higher actual costs to be incurred in connection with restructuring actions compared to the estimated costs of such actions;

cautious or reduced spending by Nortel's customers; increased consolidation among Nortel's customers and the loss of customers in certain markets; fluctuations in Nortel's operating results and general industry, economic and market conditions and growth rates; fluctuations in Nortel's cash flow, level of outstanding debt and current debt ratings; Nortel's monitoring of the capital markets for opportunities to improve its capital structure and financial flexibility; Nortel's ability to recruit and retain qualified employees; the use of cash collateral to support Nortel's normal course business activities; the dependence on Nortel's subsidiaries for funding; the impact of Nortel's defined benefit plans and deferred tax assets on results of operations and Nortel's cash flow; the adverse resolution of class actions, litigation in the ordinary course of business, intellectual property disputes and similar matters; Nortel's dependence on new product development and its ability to predict market demand for particular products; Nortel's ability to integrate the operations and technologies of acquired businesses in an effective manner; the impact of rapid technological and market change; the impact of price and product competition; barriers to international growth and global economic conditions, particularly in emerging markets and including interest rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations; the impact of rationalization and consolidation in the telecommunications industry; changes in regulation of the Internet; the impact of the credit risks of Nortel's customers and the impact of customer financing and commitments; stock market volatility generally and as a result of acceleration of the settlement date of Nortel's forward purchase contracts; negative developments associated with Nortel's supply contracts and contract manufacturing agreements, including as a result of using a sole supplier for a key component of certain optical networks solutions; the impact of Nortel's supply and outsourcing contracts that contain delivery and installation provisions, which, if not met, could result in the payment of substantial penalties or liquidated damages; and the future success of Nortel's strategic alliances.

For additional information with respect to certain of these and other factors, see the most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed by Nortel with the SEC. Unless otherwise required by applicable securities laws, Nortel disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Nortel, the Nortel logo and the Globemark are trademarks of Nortel Networks.

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