TRAI warns government over 3G guidelines
(25 sep '08 ; 12.00 . pm)

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has once again warned the government about concerns over the 3G policy guidelines, announced in August. The government, however, is preparing to announce the 3G auctions by the end of the month.

Nripendra Misra, chairman of TRAI, wrote in a letter to Siddharth Behura, secretary of the Department of Telecommunication (DoT), that granting a unified access service licence (UASL) to a foreign client might lead to legal complications. TRAI pointed out that the decision on whether to first provide licences to those companies which applied for a UASL the previous year or to those who win the 3G auction depends on the government.

Those companies which applied last year may take refuge in the courts, if the government waits to give licences to the companies that win the 3G auction. These include US-based AT&T, which applied for UASL last year and has yet to receive its licences. TRAI has said that the present 3G guidelines do not permit giving UASL to them.

The telecom authority has also stated that reforms to the 3G policy related to the licence fee are not specific and have not been ascertained. The modification states that the licencee is to pay an annual spectrum charge of one per cent on the incremental revenue due to 3G services after a period of one year.



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