Government begins auction of ₹96,238 crore spectrum for telecom services

The Centre announced on Tuesday the commencement of a spectrum auction worth ₹96,238.45 crore for telecom services. The auction will feature 10,522.35 MHz of spectrum across various bands, starting at 10 a.m.

The spectrum bands available for bidding include 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz, 2500 MHz, 3300 MHz, and 26 GHz. Three major telecom companies, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea, and Reliance Jio Infocomm, will participate in the auction.

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The Ministry of Communications stated that this auction aims to enhance existing telecom services and ensure continuity. The 1800 MHz spectrum band has a reserve price of ₹21,752.4 crore, while the 800 MHz band is priced at ₹21,341.25 crore.

“This is in line with the government’s commitment to facilitate affordable, state-of-the-art high-quality telecom services to all citizens,” the ministry added.

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) began the spectrum auction process on March 8. The spectrum will be assigned for a period of 20 years, with successful bidders allowed to make payments in 20 equal annual installments at an interest rate of 8.65 percent.

Spectrum acquired in this auction can be surrendered after a minimum of 10 years. There will be no Spectrum Usage Charges (SUC) for the spectrum acquired in this auction, according to the ministry.