DoT optimistic of finalising unified licence norms by Dec-end

DoT optimistic of finalising unified licence norms by Dec-end New Delhi: The Department of Telecommunications is optimistic of finalising guidelines for unified licence regime by December.

"Our effort is to get UL (Unified Licence) regime by the end of December...There are many issues involved. That is something on which we are not ready to make a commitment at this time, but we will resolve those issues by end of December," Telecom Secretary R Chandrashekhar said.

The concept of unified licence is that players are free to provide all telecom services with one licence. At present, companies need to get different licences for different types of services, like Internet, mobile, long distance call etc.

Winners of just concluded auction for 2G spectrum will have to take unified licence to provide telecom services. However, these licences will not have spectrum bundled with them.

DoT had already released guidelines for the new licensing regime for players whose licences were cancelled by the Supreme Court.

As per Notice Inviting Applications (NIA), new players will have to pay Rs 1 crore to get UL for each service area level (India has 22 telecom service area) permits except for Jammu and Kashmir and North East service areas where entry fee shall be Rs 50 lakhs each.

The DoT is working on licence guidelines for migrating existing telecom players to the new licensing regime.

PTI