No spectrum auction in 2011: Kapil Sibal

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Kapil Sibal Office
New Delhi, Oct 11: Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal ruled out any sale of spectrum in 2011 and said centre is planning to bring a spectrum act to tackle all issues related to radio waves.

Unveiling the draft of a New Telecom Policy (NPT), 2011, Sibal said, "We will ensure adequate availability of spectrum and its allocation in a transparent manner through market-related processes."

Meanwhile, 300 Mhz of the radio waves would be made available by 2017 and another 200 Mhz by 2020. However, as indicated earlier, the government could auction one slot of broadband wireless access (BWA) spectrum in current fiscal as it was available across the country.

"We shall enact a Spectrum Act which inter-alia deals with all issues connected with spectrum licences and their terms and conditions," the minister said. He further said that there would be a periodic audit of spectrum allocated to service providers.

The audit process would confirm that spectrum, being a scarce resource, is being utilised effectively and efficiently. The proposed draft policy is about permitting spectrum pooling, sharing and later, trading for "optimal and efficient" utilisation of the frequency.

The New Telecom Policy proposed to establish a special purpose Telecom Financial Corporation to finance various telecom projects meant to facilitate investment in the telecom sector.

"In achieving the goal of NTP-2011 revenue generation will play a secondary role," said Sibal. Meanwhile, Telecom ministry also planning to ensure the availability of additional spectrum every five years.

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