The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) on Monday issued guidelines for allotment of E-Band (71-76/81-86 GHz) carriers to TSPs with Access Service authorization and having Access Spectrum in IMT bands. The increased backhaul capacity requirements of TSPs, mainly on account of 5G, have led to the decision to allot carriers in the E-Band spectrum for backhaul on an interim basis.
E-Band Spectrum Allocation
TSPs can be allotted a maximum of 2 carriers of 250 MHz each (paired) bandwidth in E-Band GHz for their backhaul purpose in the LSAs where they hold Access Spectrum in IMT bands, depending upon their application. The final assignment of carriers will be decided accordingly.
The E-Band carriers will be assigned on a temporary and provisional basis with all such assigned mandated to participate in the auction or any other assignment methodology as decided by the Government after considering the TRAI recommendations.
The E-Band carries assigned as an interim measure will be reverted after three months from the date of finalization of results of the activity mentioned above in case the assignees fail to get the carriers/spectrum provisionally assigned as an interim measure.
E-Band Spectrum Charges
TSPs will be charged spectrum charges at 0.15% of AGR for each E Band carrier of 250 MHz paired bandwidth in the interim period, which will be adjusted retrospectively based upon the pricing decided finally from the date of the provisional assignment.
If any, no interest will be paid on the excess shortfall amount while adjusting. The spectrum charges will be payable in four quarterly instalments during each financial year. The quarterly instalments of spectrum charges for the first three quarters of a financial year are to be paid within 15 days of the completion of the relevant quarter.
The spectrum charge for the last quarter of the financial year is to be paid by 25th March based on expected revenue for the quarter subject to a minimum payment equal to the revenue share paid for the previous quarter.
Any delay in payment of spectrum charges will attract interest at a rate of 2% above the one-year MCLR of SBI existing as of 1st April of the financial year in respect of the spectrum charges pertaining to the said financial year.
Other Terms and Conditions
TSPs will have to submit an undertaking with their request for the assignment of E-Band carriers. Any misuse of E-Band carriers allotted for purposes other than backhaul will lead to the immediate withdrawal of these carriers and immediate invocation of relevant terms and conditions of the UL/UASL Access Sevice authorization.
TSPs will need to use equipment conforming to TEC/ITU and other international standards, and National Frequency Allocation Plan (NFAP) will be deployed. WPC Wing reserves the right to change or modify the frequencies assigned to the licensee without any notice in the interest of the public or for the proper conduct of telegraphs and security considerations.