Telcos pay ₹17,871 cr to government for recently acquired spectrum

S Ronendra Singh | | Updated on: Aug 17, 2022

| Photo Credit: KAI PFAFFENBACH

Airtel pays highest amount of ₹8,312 crore, followed by Jio at ₹7,864 crore

Bharti Airtel (Airtel), on Wednesday, said it has paid ₹8,312.4 crore to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) towards dues for spectrum acquired in the recently concluded 5G auctions.

Airtel has paid four years of 2022 spectrum dues upfront. This upfront payment, coupled with the moratorium on spectrum dues and adjusted gross revenue (AGR)-related payments for four years, will free up future cash flows and allow Airtel to dedicate resources to single-mindedly concentrate on the 5G roll out, it said in a statement.

Over the last one year, Airtel has also cleared ₹24,333.7 crore of its deferred spectrum liabilities, much ahead of the scheduled maturities.

“This upfront payment of four years allows us to drive 5G rollout in a concerted manner given our operating free cash flow. Airtel also has access to ₹15,740.5 crore in capital from the rights issue, which is yet to be called. With the ideal spectrum bank, best technology and adequate free cash flow, we are excited to bring to the country a world class 5G experience,” said Gopal Vittal Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Airtel.

The Sunil Mittal-owned company had bought spectrum worth ₹43,084 crore, secured for 20 years.

The company acquired 19,867.8 MHz spectrum in 900 MHz, 1,800 MHz, 2,100MHz, 3,300 MHz and 26 GHz frequency bands through the auction.

Similarly, Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio has deposited ₹7,864 crore towards dues for spectrum it acquired recently, said sources, adding that Vodafone-Idea also has deposited around ₹1,680 crore for a year. New entrant, Adani Data Networks, has deposited ₹18 crore for the same, said sources at the DoT.

Reliance Jio had bought 24,740 MHz of spectrum in the 700MHz, 800MHz, 1,800MHz, 2,100MHz, 2,500MHz, 3,300MHz and 26GHz worth ₹88,078 crore.

Vodafone Idea had bought spectrum worth ₹18,799 crore in 1,800MHz, 2,100MHz, 2,500MHz, 3,300MHz, 26GHz with a total of 6,288MHz airwaves. Adani bought 400MHz of spectrum in 26GHz worth ₹212 crore.

So, in total, the DoT has received around ₹17,871 crore towards dues for spectrum acquired in the recently concluded 5G auctions.

Published on August 17, 2022
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