DoT issues initial set of rules for 2G spectrum auctions

Telecom Lead India: The Department of Telecom (DoT) has issued first set of guidelines for the upcoming
auction of 2G spectrum in the 1800 MHz and 800 MHz bands.

As per the guidelines, the DoT will hold multiple-round
e-auctions for each region, which will be based on a reserve price for each
service area.

In the 1800 MHz band, a minimum of 8 blocks of 1.25 MHz (10
MHz) will be put to auction in all service areas, while in the 800 MHz band, 3
blocks each of 1.25 MHz (3.75 MHz) will be offered for the auction.

The auction will give chance to new entrants to participate
in the auction along with operators that lost their mobile permits due to the
Supreme Court ruling on February 2.

Each company can bid for a maximum of 6.25 MHz
of airwaves in 1800 MHz band in the upcoming.

As per the guidelines, new entrants can place their bid for
5 MHz of airwaves in the 1800 MHz band, although they will also be allowed to
bid for one additional block of 1.25 MHz.

The guidelines states that airwaves will be sold in blocks
of 1.25 MHz each and GSM incumbents can bid for a maximum of two blocks or 2.5
MHz of airwaves.

On the other hand, in the CDMA space, incumbents will be
allowed to bid for only one block. Although, pure CDMA operator Sistema that
operates under MTS brand can bid for a maximum of 3 blocks (3.75 MHz) in the
800 MHz band.

Mobile operators can use the spectrum in any band for providing any service within
the scope of service license using any technology.

The guidelines further add that incumbents can pay the
auction determined price for the airwaves they hold in the 1800 MHz band and
extend the term of this spectrum for an additional 20 years.

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