Government issues spectrum auction guidelines

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Government issues spectrum auction guidelines
Government on Wednesday issued guidelines for the second round of spectrum auction which is expected to fetch around Rs. 45,000 crore to exchequer from airwaves sale.

The guidelines, however, did not mention about the timeline for starting auction and related dates.

Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal has earlier said that the auction is planned to start from March 11 onwards.

In the second round of auction, government will put unsold GSM spectrum in 1800Mhz band and airwaves held by telecom licences in 900Mhz band that is coming for renewal starting 2014 onwards.

Government slashed base price of CDMA spectrum by 50 percent and unsold GSM spectrum by 30 percent.

The price of spectrum in 900 Mhz has been fixed at two times the price of airwaves in 1800Mhz.

The auction guidelines said auction for 1800Mhz and 900Mhz band, currently being used for GSM services, will beconducted simultaneously and auction of 800Mhz band, being used for CDMA services, in 21 out of 22 service area will be conducted separately.

In 1800Mhz, Government will auction 12 blocks of 1.25Mhz each in Delhi and Mumbai at 30 percent less price compared to the amount fixed for November auction.

The base price for each block in Delhi and Mumbai has been fixed at Rs. 485.15 crore and Rs. 474.92 crore.

In Karnataka and Rajasthan only 8 blocks will be put for auction for Rs. 231.08 crore and 46.96 crore respectively.

There will be also provision to provide 3 blocks of additional spectrum in case demand arises for the same.

Government will auction 12 blocks each of 900Mhz spectrumband in Delhi and Mumbai and 10 blocks of spectrum in Kolkata.

Norwegian telecom firm Telenor has shown its interest in bidding for Mumbai circle.

The guidelines said telecom companies winning spectrum in the auction will be allowed to use airwaves for any technology within scope of their licences.

Existing players, however, will have to get their entire spectrum holding converted in to liberalised spectrum to remove restriction on use of technology.

Successful bidders will be allowed to use spectrum for period of 20 years for telecom services, guidelines said.

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Further reading: CDMA, GSM, Kapil Sibal, spectrum, telecom
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