Now that MTNL has launched its 3G services in Delhi, private players will not be left behind. DoT has finally announced the details of 3G auction and here is a quick snapshot:
- Only 2 blocks for Delhi
- 4 blocks each for Mumbai, Kolkata and Maharashtra.
- 4 blocks for Andra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu (including Chennai) circles
- Uttar Pradesh (west) and Himachal Pradesh has been given 3 blocks and West Bengal 1 block.
- All in all, 71 blocks (of 5 Mhz each)are up for auction.
- DoT will also allow companies to apply for Universal Access Service Licence (UASL) – the approval for operating mobile services – after winning spectrum.
- Foreign players with experience in 3G services would also be permitted to bid for spectrum – as long as they transfer their spectrum to Indian subsidiary.
- Relaxed ECB norms to permit borrowing upto $500mn.
The spectrum would be allocated in the 2.3GHz, 2.5GHz bands for wireless broadband service and 2.1GHz bands for 3G services. The reserve price is fixed at Rs. Rs 160 crore for Mumbai, Delhi and Maharashtra.
Expect more clash between TRAI and DoT – especially on TRAI’s recommendation of charging 2% administrative charges.