Ministers’ group puts off decision on spectrum auction till Jan 7

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A file photo of Telecom Minister, Kapil Sibal.
A file photo of Telecom Minister, Kapil Sibal.

The Empowered Group of Ministers on Thursday put off a decision on the next round spectrum auction till January 7.

The Group discussed several issues regarding spectrum auction, including pricing, but did not reach a final decision.

“The EGoM deliberated on several issues for about two hours, then decided to meet again on January 7 to further deliberate on the issues,” Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said after the meeting.

The telecom companies, whose licences have been cancelled by the Supreme Court order are allowed to offer their services till January 18. But sources said that it was unlikely that the next round of auctions will be held before this date. The Department of Telecom may seek an extension of licences in circles where the auction did not happen in November.

The EGoM discussed the auction plan prepared by the DoT after the Cabinet approved the sale of unsold GSM spectrum in 1800 MHz band and in the premium 900 MHz spectrum band.

The DoT is in favour of auctioning spectrum in the 800 MHz band in the next round of sale scheduled for before March.

(This article was published on January 3, 2013)
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