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Trai reiterates its proposals on 3G spectrum


New Delhi: Standing by its proposals on 3G base pricing, sectoral regulator Trai today reiterated that enough spectrum in 2100 MHz should be made available for the February auction as otherwise it will “artificially increase” the market price in the band.

“The whole purpose of clubbing the 2100 MHz band spectrum along with spectrum of other bands for auction in February 2015 will be defeated if sufficient spectrum is not made available in 2100 MHz band,” Trai said in its clarifications to the Department of Telecom regarding 2100 MHz band.

The regulator added that a split auction of 2100 MHz, used for 3G services, will “artificially increase the market price of 2100 Mz in February 2015 (auction) because of the severe supply constraint”.

The regulator said : “There is no change in the reserve price for spectrum in the 2100 MHz bands from what were recommended earlier.”

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) said 15 MHz of spectrum being vacated by Defence Ministry should be auctioned in February in view of the in-principle agreement reached with the ministry even if it is not available immediately.

Inter-ministerial panel Telecom Commission is likely to discuss the revised recommendations in its meeting scheduled for January 19 after which Cabinet will take a final call on the 3G pricing issue.

Trai on December 31 had recommended a base price of Rs 2,720 crore per megahertz for 2100 band.

However, the Telecom Commission had questioned the methodology for arriving at base rate of Rs 2,720 crore per megahertz for these airwaves, which is about 19 per cent lower compared to the price paid by service providers in the 2010 auction.

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