Baburajan K’s Telecom Blog: Congratulate Kapil Sibal for taking up Vodafone tax issue

Baburajan K’s Telecom Blog: Indian mobile industry should congratulate Kapil Sibal for his latest initiatives to solve the Vodafone tax issue.

First, India’s telecom minister is industry-friendly. After assuming new portfolio of law ministry, Kapil Sibal’s first and important action was to avoid sitting on the multi-billion Vodafone tax case.

Since the minister has the law and telecom background, it will be easy to settle the complex issue that involves $3.72 billion. If he could solve the puzzle, it will have far reaching positive impact in the telecom industry.

It’s a tough task as telecom and law ministries need to convince finance ministry to solve the issue. Lack of adequate regulations are impacting this case.

India has been pursuing Vodafone over unpaid taxes stemming from its 2007 takeover of Hong Kong-based Hutchison Whampoa’s Indian cellular unit.

Second, Kapil Sibal wants to give positive message about India’s telecom industry. Telecom industry is in the process getting back to business if one considers quarterly revenues of Idea Cellular, Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications.

Third, India needs to bring back confidence in to the system. We should not keep Vodafone’s files without taking final decisions. Kapil Sibal knows that discussion with industry is the best option to ensure less reaction from the industry.

Fourth, India’s economy will flourish if there are more investments in the infrastructure sector including telecom. This is important to win votes in 2013 / 2014 elections. Solving the Vodafone tax case is just the beginning for the telecom minister. Hope he will bring more cheers to the industry which is looking for more spectrum, more transparency and strong policies.

India usually avoid congratulating ministers. They should not wait till the next polls to hear what they have done good for the country. Let us congratulate India’s telecom minister for taking up the Vodafone tax case. Hope there will be solution to this issue as well.

Pix source: Hindu

Baburajan K
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