- Spectrum auction to be conducted by March 2021
- A total of 2251.25 MHz of airwaves to be put on sale
- Notice inviting application to be released this month
The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved guidelines for the next round of spectrum auction which may begin in the last week of January, said Union Minister Prakash Javadekar.
“Cabinet approves Auction of spectrum in 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz and 2500 MHz frequency bands, for a validity period of 20 years. A total of 2251.25 MHz is being offered with a total valuation of Rs. 3,92,332.70 crores”said Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.
Prasad also said, “It’s been 4 years since the last auction, conditions for the auction to be same as 2016.” This means, notice inviting applications will commence this month. “We propose to hold auction by March 2021,” he added.
The Department of Telecom (DoT) will issue a notification inviting applications for the auction this month. The auction will be open to both the incumbent telecom service providers and new companies.
“By winning the right to use spectrum through the auction, incumbent telecom service providers will be able to augment their network capacity whereas new players will be able to start their services,”the government said in its release.
“In the auction, bidders will have to comply with parameters/conditions e.g. block size in which bidders will be able to submit their bids, spectrum cap i.e. the maximum amount of spectrum that can be held by each bidder after the completion of the auction, roll-out obligations, payment terms etc.,” the government further added.
Successful bidders will have the option to pay the entire amount upfront or they can choose to pay a specified amount upfront and the remainder in a maximum of sixteen equal annual instalments after a moratorium of two years from the auction. Additionally, the companies will also have to pay 3% of the Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) excluding wireline services as spectrum usage charges.