Spectrum auction will likely take place before 2012’s end, with lower base prices: Sibal
The next round of spectrum auction would likely take place before the end of this year and the reserve prices for the same would be lower than priced fixed in the previous round of auction, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said.
In a video message, Mr. Sibal said, "Next set of auctions which are going to take place, we are looking by end of December, hopefully. What will be set for floor price on which operators will bid . I think, relatively lower for them to make competitive bids."
Mr. Sibal made the comments on the occasion of re-branding of GSM industry body Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI).
The matter is currently under the consideration of inter-ministerial panel Telecom Commission, which will send its recommendations to the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM), which will then send its views to the Cabinet for the final decision.
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has recommended a cut of 62 per cent in reserve price of 2G spectrum, and a cut of up to 37 per cent in reserve price of radio-waves freed from the annulment of 122 licences.
COAI Chairman Himanshu Kapania still said the base price for spectrum is still high as compared with prices in other part of the world. He said that the prices should be rationalized to bring them in line with the Indian consumers' ability to afford these services.