India to Issue 4G Spectrum Auction Invitation


India’s Department of Telecom (DoT) has been tipped to distribute auction applications to potential bidders this week for the country’s next 4G spectrum sale in March, The Economic Times (ET) reported.

Industry sources told ET the auction would be held 45 to 60 days after DoT issued the documents to Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea.

In mid-December the government approved guidelines for the sale of spectrum across seven bands. A total of about 2,250MHz of airwaves will be on the block, with spectrum licences valid for 20 years. Analysts forecast the auction to generate up to $53.3 billion.

DoT also plans to convene a meeting with local operators, equipment vendors and international tech companies, including Google, Facebook and Apple, to start work on a long-term spectrum roadmap and identify potential 5G bands, the newspaper wrote.
In October, the country’s government established a panel comprising the heads of its telecoms and defence ministries, among others, to streamline spectrum allocation and deliver a long-term roadmap designed to offer operators clarity on the specific bands to be made available.
The 4G auction planned in 2020 was pushed to early 2021.