BSNL Fresh 4G Tender Approved by ETG: Report

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Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited’s (BSNL) has been approved by the Empowered Technology Group (ETG) to issue a fresh tender inviting global vendors to upgrade 57,000 of its sites to make them 4G compatible.

Finnish vendor Nokia along with Ericsson and Samsung, are expected to participate in the tender process of the telco.

According to an ET Telecom report, ETG has given its nod to BSNL for going ahead with its hybrid 4G plan. To recall, much recently, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) also gave its nod to BSNL for hybrid 4G plans.

Indian Companies Can Participate in the Tender Too

If the Indian companies are able to generate Proof of Concept (PoC) in time, they can also become a part of the tender rolled out for global vendors.

It is worth noting that both Huawei and ZTE, along with any other Chinese vendor, has been abstained from participating in the tender process per the government’s new policy, barring companies from nations sharing borders with India.

ZTE and Nokia have played a crucial role in rolling out 2G, and 3G networks of BSNL and the recent move will certainly hurt the meaningful business ZTE could have done in India.

Further, the greenfield 4G tender might also make it mandatory for the equipment used in the networks to be 5G compatible so that BSNL won’t have to make huge capex spends again to upgrade its network.

Even though Chinese companies are not going to be included in the BSNL’s 4G plan, another report from ET Telecom says that Huawei is confident about being included in India’s telecom future.

Jay Chen, Vice President of Huawei Asia Pacific, believes that Huawei won’t be ‘blocked’ from doing business in India. He believes that the Indian government will make the right decision when the time comes and include Huawei in its plans to roll out 5G network in India.

It is going to be interesting times ahead with BSNL finally pushing to rollout 4G and the government clearing its stance on ZTE and Huawei.

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