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DoT unlikely to auction backhaul spectrum in E and V bands

June 13, 2018

The Department of Telecommunication (DoT) is unlikely to auction spectrum in the E and V bands, and is instead likely to accept the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) recommendations for light-touch regulation to allocate these airwaves, which operators can use to upgrade capacity on their networks.

In its draft of new communications policy, DoT aims to achieve efficient spectrum utilization and management by promoting the effective utilization of high capacity backhaul E-band and V-band spectrum in line with international best practices.

Operators use traditional microwave bands for backhauling the mobile traffic generated from each physical site. With increasing data traffic, operators believe traditional microwave is not sufficient to meet backhaul capacity needs and the government should release E band and V band.

Earlier, TRAI had suggested a fixed fee mechanism to allocate these airwaves. It has said that E band should be charged at Rs 10,000 per annum per slot of 250 MHz each, and there should be an initial promotional discount of 50 per cent for three years from the date of allocation of first carrier in this band. For V band, the regulator has recommended a charge of Rs 1,000 per annum per slot of 50 MHz each.


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