Bell Atlantic Commemorates Philippines' Centennial

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Bell Atlantic Commemorates Philippines' Centennial

Company Sponsors Events, Exhibits in Washington, D.C. and Manila

April 8, 1998

Media contact:

David Frail,
Michael Kornfeld,
Bell Atlantic Foundation

NEW YORK -- Bell Atlantic will help commemorate the first 100 years
of Filipino independence through its sponsorship of the 1998
Smithsonian Festival of American Folklife in Washington, D.C. this
summer and a photographic exhibit at Expo Pilipino in Manila, the
Philippines' capital.

The Bell Atlantic Foundation is contributing $50,000 to the
Smithsonian Folklife Festival, which has been designated the "top
event in the U.S." by the tourism industry. The company's support of
the Folklife Festival will be announced by the Smithsonian Institution
during a reception tonight in Washington, D.C.

This year's festival will focus on the Philippines in recognition of
its centennial. More than one million visitors are expected to attend
the free outdoor festival June 24-28 and July 1-5 featuring music,
dance and theatrical performances, as well as exhibitions showcasing
traditional and contemporary art. A similar event, Expo Pilipino,
will take place in Manila this summer.

"As a global communications company with a presence in the Philippines
and a commitment to providing support for cultural activities in the
communities we serve both here and abroad, we are delighted to play a
role in celebrations both in our nation's capital and in Manila," said
Raymond W. Smith, chairman and CEO of Bell Atlantic.

With its strategic partner in the Philippines, BayanTel, Bell Atlantic
will also be participating in concurrent festivities in Manila marking
100 years of Filipino independence.

Bell Atlantic is supporting a U.S. photographic exhibit at Expo
Pilipino entitled "The U.S. Contribution to Philippine Education."
The exhibit, being mounted under the auspices of the U.S. Embassy in
Manila, will include 60 photographs reflecting the role of the United
States in creating the modern public school system in the Philippines.

Bell Atlantic's Network Systems subsidiary is the strategic partner in
BayanTel (Bayan Telecommunications Holdings Corp.), the leading new
telecommunications operator in the Philippines. Formed in 1993,
BayanTel provides a full range of communications services - including
local exchange, domestic and international long distance, data, pay
phone, public calling office and security monitoring - and is also the
largest shareholder in wireless provider Extelcom. BayanTel is owned
by the Lopez Group, led by Benpres Holdings Corp., and Bell Atlantic,
the Asia Infrastructure Fund and Chase Capital Partners.

Bell Atlantic - formed through the merger of Bell Atlantic and NYNEX -
is at the forefront of the new communications and information
industry. The Bell Atlantic Foundation supports a variety of projects
domestically and internationally, with an emphasis on new technology
applications in education, health and human services, the arts and
humanities, and civic development in the communities served by Bell
Atlantic. For more information, visit
on the Internet.

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