The government managed to garner Rs 66,000 crore from the first day of the spectrum auction. Now after three days, it has managed to gather the bids worth Rs 77,000 crore as the telcos are bidding continuously. As reported by PTI, a DoT official commented, “The bidding has taken place in all bands. At present, a value of approximately Rs 77,000 crore has been committed by bidders in respect of provisionally won spectrum. There is still spectrum, which is yet to be sold. Bidding would recommence tomorrow.”
Spectrum auction for the 2100 MHz, 1800 MHz, 900 MHz and 800 MHz bands began on 4th March, 2015 and six rounds of bidding was completed by 6th March. Presently, 17 rounds of bidding have taken place and it will continue till today. After the completion of the eleventh round the bids value stood at Rs 65,000 crore. The government is expecting to raise over Rs 82,000 crore from the auction. However, the final amount is expected to go much higher.
Presently, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone are locked with Reliance Jio to protect their spectrum they need to carry voice and data in the world’s second-biggest smartphone market. In all, eight bidders are in fray.
A total of 380.75MHz of spectrum is on offer in the premium 900MHz band, 1,800MHz and 800MHz while 5MHz is up for bidding in the 2,100MHz band across 17 out of 22 telecom areas or circles in the country.
Overall, there are 29 licences in 18 service areas which will expire in 2015-16. These licences hold 184MHz spectrum in the 900MHz band and 34.2MHz in 1,800MHz band. It is obligatory that these companies have to bid for spectrum if they have to continue their telecom services. Last year, the government had ranked Rs 62,162 crore from the last spectrum auction.