Telecom spectrum auction to continue today; Bids worth over Rs 77,000 cr received on first day

Communications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that on the first day of Telecom spectrum auction yesterday, winning bids received till 6 PM were worth 77 thousand 146 crore rupees.

Communications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that on the first day of Telecom spectrum auction yesterday, winning bids received till 6 PM were worth 77 thousand 146 crore rupees.

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This has already substantially exceeded pre-bid estimates of 45 thousand crore rupees. He said, bidding took place for spectrum in 800, 900, 1,800, 2,100 and 2,300 Megahertz. Mr Prasad said, participants did not bid for 700 and 2,500 Megahertz.

The auction of spectrum commenced at 10 AM yesterday and four rounds of bidding took place till 6 PM. Another one or two rounds are expected today. Three bidders, Bharti Airtel Limited, Vodafone Idea Limited and Reliance Jio Infocomm are participating in the auction.

Bidder-wise details of quantity won and amounts payable will be available only after conclusion of the auction. The e-auction is based on Simultaneous Multiple Round Ascending Auction methodology. Available spectrum in all bands is simultaneously put to auction in all the Licensed Service Areas.

A total of 2,308.80 Megahertz spectrum is being put to auction, out of which there have been bids for 849.20 Megahertz so far. Excluding spectrum in 700 Megahertz and 2500 Megahertz bands, this is almost 60 per cent of the spectrum put to auction.

In the 2016 spectrum auction, where there were seven bidders, the spectrum sold was 41 per cent by quantity and 12 per cent by value of the total spectrum put to auction. The corresponding figures in the 2021 spectrum auction so far are 37 per cent and 19 per cent with three participants.

Spectrum which will be assigned to the successful bidders is valid for 20 years.

In 700 Megahertz, 800 Megahertz and 900 Megahertz bands, bidders are required to pay 25 per cent of the final bid amount as upfront payment. In the rest of the bands, bidders are required to make payment of 50 per cent of final bid amount upfront. The balance amount after upfront payment will be payable in 16 equated annual instalments after a moratorium of two years.

The auction will resume this morning and is expected to conclude later in the day.

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