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Regulatory uncertainty to impact telecom's future: Bharti

Regulatory uncertainty to impact telecom's future: Bharti

Telecom giant Bharti Airtel's chairman Sunil Mittal says recent regulatory developments, which have led to huge uncertainty, could have significant implications for the future of telecom sector and impact India's global competitiveness.

Bharti Airtel's chairman Sunil Mittal Bharti Airtel's chairman Sunil Mittal
Recent regulatory developments, which have led to huge uncertainty, could have significant implications for the future of telecom sector and impact India's global competitiveness, telecom giant Bharti Airtel's chairman Sunil Mittal said on Wednesday.

"The recent regulatory developments in India will have significant implications on the future of telephony and broadband, as well as India's global competitiveness," Mittal said in a release announcing the company's results for FY12.

Meanwhile, Bharti Enterprises Deputy Group CEO and MD Akhil Gupta said at a conference, "This was perhaps the most disturbed year (2011-12) on the regulatory front...The uncertainty not only continues but it is huge."

Gupta said the Indian government should take pro-customer and pro-industry decisions with regard to the spectrum pricing.

The comments follow the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recently issuing recommendations for the sale of spectrum, after the Supreme Court order that cancelled 122 licences for 2G (second-generation) telephony.

TRAI has suggested a base price of Rs 3,622 crore for a megahertz (MHz) of pan-India spectrum, which is around 10 times higher than the price at which 2G licences bundled with 4.4 Mhz spectrum were allocated in 2008 under the then Telecom Minister of India A Raja.

According to TRAI, a minimum of 5 Mhz spectrum should be allotted, which means that pan-India airwaves in 1800 MHz band will cost Rs 18,000 crore.