Centre Approves Telecom Spectrum Auction At Base Price Of ₹96,317.65 Cr

Centre Approves Telecom Spectrum Auction At Base Price Of ₹96,317.65 Cr

The Union Cabinet, under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi, has endorsed a proposition from the Department of Telecommunications to conduct a spectrum auction

Juviraj AnchilUpdated: Friday, February 09, 2024, 09:41 AM IST
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The Crucial Spectrum Auction | Picture credit: Pixabay

The Union Cabinet, under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi, has endorsed a proposition from the Department of Telecommunications to conduct a spectrum auction, allocating spectrum to successful bidders for delivering telecom services. Asserting that additional spectrum will enhance the quality and coverage of telecom services for consumers, the government disseminated its stance through an official statement.

This auction is slated to consist spectrum across various frequency bands including 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz, 2500 MHz, 3300 MHz, and 26 GHz. The assigned spectrum will be valid for a period of 20 years. A substantial total of 10,523.15 MHz is on offer, valued at Rs 96,317.65 crore based on reserve prices.

The reserve prices are said to be on the same level as the previous spectrum auction 2 years ago in 2022.

India's Role in a 5G Future

"Bharat is today known for taking lead in digital technologies. Its 5G rollout has been recognised globally as the fastest 5G rollout. Mobile communication is the gateway to a robust and equitable Digital India. Further, Bharat is determined to take lead in 6G services which will take shape over next 5 years," said Centre.

Additionally, the Cabinet has established a Committee of Secretaries (CoS) tasked with deliberating on the re-farming of existing spectrum usage, aimed at augmenting spectrum availability to cater to future telecommunication service demands.

In addition, the Union Cabinet has also sanctioned a proposal addressing spectrum requisites for rail-based urban/regional transit systems, such as NCRTC, in the 700 MHz band, particularly for Automatic Train Protection (ATP) systems and operations.

In 2022 spectrum auctions, where the government put a total of 72,097.85 MHz of spectrum for auction and was the first ever sale of 5G airwaves, it fetched a record ₹1.5 trillion.

The auction was for 72 GHz of radio waves, worth at least ₹4.3 lakh crore, and 75 per cent of it was sold. The union government earned ₹1,50,173 crore, which is almost double the ₹77,814 crore it earned in the sale before that, in March 2021. 

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