DoT likely to auction broadband spectrum this fiscal

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 12, 2017 Published on July 20, 2011

The Department of Telecom is looking at the possibility of carrying out another round of spectrum auctions for broadband services this fiscal.

This comes after the Finance Ministry asked the DoT to push through with the auction in a bid to raise revenues for the Government.

“I can't say specifically at this point of time what the exact time frame will be for the auction. We are trying our best to expedite the process as much as possible," the DoT Secretary, Mr R. Chandrashekhar, told reporters on the sidelines of an industry event.

With revenues under pressure and market conditions not favouring disinvestment, the Finance Ministry is putting pressure on the Telecom Department to go in for a fresh round of broadband spectrum auction this fiscal.

The Finance Ministry has twice asked the Department of Telecom to sell available broadband spectrum at the earliest to meet non-tax revenue targets. The Ministry is expecting to mop around Rs 13,000 crore from the sale of airwaves.

The DoT has 20 Mhz of broadband spectrum in the 2.3 Ghz band, which is enough for accommodating one operator in most of the telecom circle. This frequency band is the same one which was sold in 2010 to private operators.

The Government got nearly Rs 39,000 crore from selling two slots of 20 Mhz each in this band.

Qualcomm, Bharti Airtel, Aircel, Tikona and Reliance Infotel are among those who own spectrum in the 2.3 Ghz band.

These operators are planning to launch fourth generation (4G) based broadband services using this spectrum.

Published on July 20, 2011
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