02:02 pm - Saturday 18 November 2017

Cabinet directs DoT to decide fast on CDMA spectrum base price

By insightVAS - Fri Dec 13, 1:10 pm

Union Cabinet is learnt to have asked the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to decide on reserve price of CDMA spectrum expeditiously. The CDMA reserve price has been the bone of contention between the DoT and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

In its meeting held on December 9, the Cabinet directed Telecom Ministry “that the reserve price of spectrum in 800 Mhz (CDMA) band be also finalised expeditiously,” sources told news source.

The DoT has approached TRAI thrice for its view on CDMA spectrum price so that airwaves be put for sale in the auction, scheduled to start in January 2014. The regulator, however, did not share its recommendation on base price and instead suggested against the auction of the CDMA airwaves at present.

According to sources, the DoT has not approached the TRAI for the fourth time as it was directed by the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGOM) last month to seek afresh the sectoral regulator’s view on CDMA spectrum base price.

CDMA spectrum is used by Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL), Reliance Communications and Tata Teleservices. Public sector telecom companies — BSNL and MTNL — also have CDMA spectrum but they have offered to surrender a part of the airwaves.

Operators like Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular are GSM-based service providers.

SSTL, which is pure-play CDMA technology-based service provider, offers its services under the brand name ‘MTS’. It had earlier alleged that TRAI was favouring GSM players.

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