Government plans to scrap ‘wireless operating licence’

PTIUpdated: Thursday, May 30, 2019, 11:45 AM IST
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New Delhi : In a bid to facilitate ease of doing business, government is considering doing away with the ‘wireless operating licence’ for access service providers, Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha said on Wednesday, reports PTI.

“Government is considering to do away with the wireless operating licence for access service providers,” Sinha said at the opening session of a conference organised by global mobile industry body GSMA. Government is also in the process of notifying rules for ‘right of way’ and installation of towers, the minister added.

At present, the telecom service providers have to obtain a separate licence for installing and operating base stations as also other wireless equipments, which is already covered as part of their main licences like the Unified Access Service Licence. Hence the move to do away with a separate “wireless operating licence” would reduce the hassles for telecom operators, a Telecom Ministry official said.

Since this is already covered under the access service licence, a separate wireless operating licence only leads to “duplicacy”, the official pointed out.  Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has been making representation to Government for removal of this licence, saying it would facilitate ease of doing business and avoid duplication of licences, industry sources said. Meanwhile, the minister said the government is committed to assigning spectrum won by operators in the current auctions, by November 19, that is, within 30 days of payment. India has one of the lowest call rates ensuring affordability for the common man, he said.

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