Five rounds completed on first day of 3G auction

NEW DELHI: The auction for the third generation (3G) spectrum commenced today with nine telecom service providers taking part, and five rounds were completed by the evening.
The provisional winning price for Delhi at the end of round five was Rs 3.73 billion and a sum of Rs 37.3 million was announced as the price increment for round six.

In comparison, the provisional winning price for Mumbai, the rest of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu was Rs 3.63 billion each. A sum of Rs 36.2 million was announced as the price increment for round six in each of these territories.

For Kolkata, the provisional winning price was Rs 1.36 billion and the price increment for round six was Rs 13.5 million. For the rest of West Bengal, the figure was Rs 1.21 billion with no price increment for round six.

The provisional winning price for 12 other states varied between Rs 1.26 billion and Rs 300 million. Uttar Pradesh is the only state where separate bidding is being held for west and east part.

Four private players would be allotted spectrum in five states- Punjab, Bihar, West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir- while the remaining telecom circles will have three private players each.

The telecom operators are Aircel, Bharti Airtel, Etisalat DB Telecom Pvt Ltd, Idea Cellular, Reliance, S Tel, Tata Teleservices, Videocon Telecommunications and Vodafone Essar. 
Meanwhile, for the broadband and wireless access (BWA) auction, which will be held after the conclusion of 3G auctioning, 11 telecom companies- Aircel Ltd, Augere (Mauritius), Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular, Infotel Broadband Services, Qualcomm, Reliance WiMax, Spice Internet Service Provider, Tata Communications Internet Services, Tikona Digital Networks and Vodafone Essar - have qualified, Department of Telecom (DoT) said.

The government had set Rs 35 billion as the base price for pan-India 3G spectrum and Rs 17.5 billion for a BWA services. The government is expected to earn about Rs 200 billion from the process.

3G services, which would allow faster connectivity and enable customers to enjoy Internet TV, video-on-demand, audio-video calls and high-speed data exchange, would start from 1 September.

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