The Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) decision, which met on Tuesday, to sell up to 13.75 MHz of spectrum in the 1800 MHz band, is “incrementally positive” for the sector, according to a note by Barclays Research.
“We believe that this should be able to satisfy the current demand of the 2G spectrum both from new players and existing participants. Further, if the entire 13.75 MHz is taken, there would not be enough spectrum left for 900 MHz re-farming,” it added.
This would bring the total 1800 MHz spectrum to be put up for auction at 13.75 MHz per circle. This is a positive step over the 5 MHz that was initially recommended by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and 10 MHz suggested by the Telecom Commission for auction last week.
However, the group od ministers decision to put 13.75 MHz of spectrum up for auction in the 1800 MHz band would create a spectrum shortage for the 900 MHz refarming in 16 of the 22 circles. This is based on spectrum availability provided by TRAI.
Pricing of each of the bands would be critical in the incumbent's decision on how to play the tradeoff between acquiring 1800 MHz band and positioning against the re-farming of the 900 MHz band. Decision on the reserve price for the auction has been deferred to the next EGoM meeting, tentatively scheduled for June 20-22.
Now we can see two side of the story while as reported earlier when Mason study was out it public it said that the maximum harm will inflicted on consumers although it was was commissioned by Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Vodafone India. Now in the latest report by a independent research company its all together giving a different view point. We now ask you whom do you support the Empowered Group of Ministers view or the Operators do let us know via comments.