GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
Ministry of Communication and IT
DEPARTMENT OF TELECOMMUNICATIONS
UNSTARRED QUESTION NO 2186
TO BE ANSWERED ON 20.03.2008
New Telecom Licenses .
SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR
Will the Minister of COMMUNICATION AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY be pleased to state:-
(a) whether Government’s attention has been drawn to the effect that existing Telecom companies have predicted that new telecom licenses will collapse in three years;
(b) if so, Government’s reaction thereto;
(c) whether this suggests that existing incumbent operators have significant market power to prevent growth of competition in the sector; and
(d) the steps Government and the Regulator are taking to ensure that market power of existing operators do not prevent free and fair competition?
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
(DR. SHAKEEL AHMAD)
(a) Yes, Sir.
(b) to (d) Subsequent to acceptance of recommendations dated 28.08.2007 of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), inter-alia, that there should be no cap on the number of access provider in any service area, 120 new Unified Access Services (UAS) licenses have been granted so far. Viewing the present tele-density of around 25, there are ample opportunities available to the new telecom licensees. Any such forecast by the existing telecom licensee(s) that new telecom licensees will collapse in three years, appears to be only speculative.