5G spectrum auction is not far from now. The spectrum auction could be announced by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) in early June. Since May is about to end, we can expect that things are rolling fast in the telecom department. According to an ET Now report, the DoT has floated the cabinet note on the 5G spectrum auction. The final decision from the Union Cabinet is most likely going to arrive during the next meeting.
The Digital Communications Commission, the top body inside the telecom department, had sided with the recommendations provided by the TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India). The regulatory body has valued the airwaves put in the auction at around Rs 7.5 lakh crore.
As per the publication’s report, the DoT will be looking to complete the auction process within the next two months. This will allow the Modi government to realise its vision of India getting the first commercial 5G network by August 15, 2022.
Industry Is Not Happy With the Spectrum Pricing, Will Cabinet Provide a Relief
The telecom industry and its stakeholders aren’t very enthusiastic about the reserve pricing of the spectrum bands and thus are a little on edge about participating in full capacity in the upcoming spectrum auction.
The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) had also expressed its unhappiness over TRAI’s recommendations. The final call will be given by the Cabinet to determine what will be the reserve spectrum price for the upcoming auction.
It is unlikely that the Cabinet would go against the recommendations from the regulatory body, but the telcos would still be hoping for a better outcome for them. The industry would be looking forward to some of the key decisions taken by the Cabinet, which will include whether the spectrum would be auctioned for 20 years or 30 years.
TRAI had recommended that both could be the case where the spectrum being sold for 30 years would come at 1.5 times the price of the spectrum being sold for 20 years.