Government clears end-July 5G spectrum auction; DoT expects 10x internet speed after deployment

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Government approves 5G spectrum auction

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New Delhi: On Wednesday, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a proposal by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to hold 5G spectrum auctions, paving the way for successful bidders to provide ultra-high-speed 5G services. to the public and businesses.

The DoT expects mid-range and high-end spectrum to be used by telecommunications service providers (TSPs) to deploy 5G technology-based services capable of delivering speed and capabilities that would be about 10 times greater. to what is possible thanks to the current 4G. services.

A total of 72097.85 MHz of spectrum with a validity period of 20 years will be auctioned to be held by the end of July 2022. The auction will be held for spectrum in various low frequencies (600 MHz , 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz), medium (3300 MHz) and high (26 GHz) frequency bands, notes a cabinet statement.

“The spectrum auction will benefit from the telecommunications sector reforms announced in September 2021. The reforms include zero spectrum usage fees (USCs) on spectrum acquired at the next auction, providing significant relief to service providers in terms of operation. cost of telecommunications networks. In addition, the obligation to present a financial bank guarantee equivalent to an annuity has also been abolished,” the Cabinet note states.

For the first time ever, there is no mandatory upfront payment requirement by successful bidders. Spectrum payments can be made in 20 equal annual installments to be paid in advance at the beginning of each year. This should significantly alleviate cash requirements and reduce the cost of doing business in this sector. Bidders would have the option to return the spectrum after 10 years without any future obligation with respect to balance payments.

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