Regarding the spectrum auction, Vodafone India has sought clarifications from the telecom ministry and the department of telecom (DoT). This time, Vodafone is taking on Reliance Jio Infocomm.
While Vodafone is looking at formal notification of the revised SUC in advance of the auctions which are scheduled to commence on 3 February 2014, it wants the Government to apply SUC at 1 percent AGR for both 2.1GHz/3G and BWA, with a weighted average for existing spectrum allocations in 900/1800MHz.
This is because Vodafone feels that there will be no distinction between the mobile services that will be offered on 3G and BWA. Interestingly, Vodafone does not have any BWA license in India, whereas Reliance Jio Infocomm is the pan-India BWA licensee to offer 4G services on TD-LTE technology. Airtel is also a licensee in India with limited exposure.
The telecom operator said that TRAI had recommended SUC at 1 percent AGR for both 2.1GHz/3G as well as BWA.
Since there is virtually no distinction between the services being offered on 2.1GHz/3G and BWA – as both are classified as mobile broadband, the Government should adopt the same SUC approach for both 2.1GHz /3G as well as BWA, i.e. for both the spectrums, the SUC be applied at 1 percent AGR with a weighted average for existing spectrum allocations in 900/1800MHz.
Vodafone says this would also be in public interest as it will enable /facilitate faster rollout and proliferation of mobile broadband, which is one of the committed objectives of the Government under NTP-2012.