Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, and Vodafone Idea (Vi) are working on developing more and more use cases around their 5G networks in a testing environment. The telcos are leveraging the 5G spectrum given by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). But, the telecom operators can’t roll out 5G without first going through the spectrum auction and acquiring airwaves meant for 5G commercial services.
Niti Aayog, the think tank of the government, has suggested that the telcos should be given 5G spectrum for 30 years instead of 20 years. But the key thing to note in Niti Aayog’s suggestion is that the body wants the government to give the spectrum for 30 years at the price of 20 years.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) had suggested different pricing for 20 years and 30 years. Jio, Airtel, and Vi weren’t too happy about the pricing recommendations. Now, according to a Financial Express report, Niti Aayog has suggested that keeping the price the same as suggested for 20 years, the government should give the 5G airwaves to the telcos for 30 years.
This recommendation from the body must make the telcos quite happy. It is worth noting that Amitabh Kant, CEO of Niti Aayog, is also a member of the Digital Communications Commission (DCC), the highest inter-ministerial decision-making body for the telecom sector.
DCC Had Backed Pricing Recommendations of TRAI
DCC had backed the pricing recommendations for the spectrum that TRAI suggested. The recommendations have been put forward by DoT to the Cabinet, which will take the final call for key decisions revolving around 5G.
This recommendation from Niti Aayog could be a problem solver for the telecom sector. It will also ensure that money flows in for the government, and the telcos can also at least get the airwaves for a longer duration. As mentioned, the final decision will be taken by the Cabinet, which shouldn’t take long now.