The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had last year worked its magic for the Indian telecom sector and announced multiple relief measures. These measures had addressed the liquidity concerns mostly. Telcos were given the opportunity to opt for a moratorium of spectrum payments for up to four years. Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea both opted for it.
The DoT has also been working on the second set of reforms for the sector that will look to ease the way telcos do business. According to a PTI report, a committee formed by DoT to oversee the telecom sector reforms 2.0 is expected to submit a report to the department by the end of this month.
New Telecom Sector Reforms to be Announced in July-August Timeframe
It is worth noting that the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is already preparing for 5G spectrum auctions. However, parallelly, the department has also been working on introducing the next set of reforms as soon as possible. The PTI report suggests that the announcement will likely come in July – August 2022 timeframe.
This time, the reforms will focus on different areas such as satellite telephony, wireless WPC, licensing, and more. The goal of the government is to make doing business for the telcos as soon as possible.
A relief for the telecom sector was inevitable as the government can’t ignore the industry with only three private players where one could have been knocked out if the relief package hadn’t arrived. With only two private players in the scene, duopoly would have come into the market.
The telecom services have been very important and have acted as the backbone of the industry during the coronavirus pandemic. Without the telecom operators and the telecom industry, the spread of crucial information across the country would have been very hard during essential times. It will be interesting to see what exactly the government has planned for the sector this time.