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India eyes Rs 35,100 crore from partial sale of Bharatnet network, tower infra

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NEW DELHI: The government of India expects to realise Rs 35,100 crore from the partial sale of Bharatnet fibre assets and around 13,500 mobile towers owned by state-run telecom firms as part of its national monetisation pipeline released on Monday.

Government think tank Niti Aayog has valued over 2.86 lakh kilometre of optical fibre assets laid by BBNL and BSNL under rural broadband project Bharatnet at Rs 26,300 crore, according to the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) document.

According to the document, BSNL’s 13,567 mobile tower assets and MTNL’s 1,350 towers have been valued at Rs 8,800 crore. Both the PSUs jointly own 69,047 mobile towers.

“Indicative monetisation value of Rs 26,300 crores has been considered over FY23 and FY 24. It may be noted that the actual private investment towards these packages could be lower than the estimated capex and a portion of capex may be met out of grant,” the NMP document said.

According to the document, the indicative monetisation value for Bharatnet fibre assets is considered based on a capex approach.

The total approved cost for Bharatnet project is Rs 61,109 crore which includes Rs 42,068 crore for BharatNet (Phase-I and Phase-II) and a maximum of Rs 19,041 crore on viability gap funding (VGF) for implementation of the PPP model of BharatNet in 16 states, according to government information shared in Parliament.

As on March 31, 2021, the government has utilised Rs 24,201 crore for the project.

“The bidding process for this project (Bharatnet) is expected to be initiated during FY’22 and the actual outlay of capex will happen over 2 years from the date of award,” the document said.

According to the NMP, 5,25,706 kilometres of optical fibre has been laid under Bharatnet project which aims to connect all villages in the country with a high speed broadband network.

Earlier the scope of the project was limited to 2.5 lakh gram panchayats which has now been extended to village level.

In the first phase of telecom asset monetisation proposed in FY’23, the NMP estimates to realise Rs 20,180 crore which includes Rs 15,780 crore from Bharatnet fibre and Rs 4,400 crore from mobile tower sale.

In FY’24, Niti Aayog estimates to realise Rs 14,920 crore comprising Rs 10,520 crore from Bharatnet fibre and Rs 4,400 crore from sale of BSNL and MTNL mobile towers.

The NMP proposes to realise 6 lakh crore from asset sale during FY 22-25 across various sectors of which 6 per cent value is expected to be realised from the telecom sector.

“The NMP is meant to serve as an essential roadmap for the Asset monetisation of various brownfield infrastructure assets across roads, railways, shipping, aviation, power, telecom, oil and gas, and warehousing sectors,” the document said.

The government in the union-budget 2021-22 envisioned preparation of NMP to provide a direction to the monetisation initiative and visibility of investors and NITI Aayog was tasked with creation of the NMP for brownfield core infrastructure assets.

Source: Press Trust of India

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5g

Vi showcases 5G

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NEW DELHI: Vodafone Idea Limited (VIL), leading telecom operator, today demonstrated a range of 5G-based technology solutions as part of its ongoing 5G trials on government allocated 5G spectrum in Pune, Maharashtra and Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

According to Ravinder Takkar, MD & CEO, Vodafone Idea Limited, “With our 5G trials underway, Vi is preparing to take India on the next journey of fifth generation wireless mobile communication technology. Our 5G trials showcase a whole new world of possibilities across various domains that promise a new era of technology advancement in India. I am confident that 5G will bring a better tomorrow that will deliver significant benefits to consumers, businesses and society, driving digital economy growth in India.”

With the purpose for a better tomorrow, Vi has been conducting 5G trials and developed a wide range of use cases relevant for Enterprises and Consumers in India. Vi has partnered with industry leaders like L&T Smart World & Communication, Athonet, Indian start-ups like Vizzbee & Tweek Labs, and technology leaders – Ericsson and Nokia for trialling use cases in the two locations.

Committed to helping its customers thrive and have a better tomorrow, Vi is leveraging the power of 5G technology across segments such as industry 4.0, smart cities, smart healthcare, smart workplace, smart education, smart agriculture, gaming, amongst others. Vi’s trials have proven that high data speed, low latency and reliability of 5G technology, can bring about massive developments by enhancing business performance, revolutionizing customer experience, changing consumer lifestyle and positively impacting people dwelling in remote corners of India.

Vi has been allocated 26 GHz and 3.5 GHz spectrum in the mmWave band by the DoT, for 5G network trials and use cases. Vi has achieved peak speeds in excess of 1.5 Gbps on 3.5 GHz, more than 4.2 Gbps on 26 GHz and up to 9.8 Gbps on backhaul spectrum of E-bands.

The 5G trial network set up by Vi in Pune, deploys Ericsson Radios and Ericsson Dual Mode Core based on cloud native technology comprising of 5G SA, 5G NSA & LTE packet core functions. All use cases demonstrated in Pune have been developed over Ericsson’s 5G technology solutions.

In Gandhinagar, Vi is using Nokia’s AirScale radio portfolio and Microwave E-band solution for the trial that support enterprises, both large and small and medium businesses with reliable connectivity. Vi use cases in Gandhinagar were demonstrated via a live telecast at the special media preview held in Pune.

 

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Mobile Services

Vi launches new tariff plans for Digital India

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NEW DELHI: Vodafone Idea Limited (VIL), India’s leading telecom service provider, has announced the launch of its new tariff plans for prepaid users in India. The new plans will be available starting 25th November 2021.

The new plans will start the process of ARPU improvement and help address the financial stress faced by the industry.

These tariff plans will allow VIL to continue improving India’s Fastest Mobile Network, verified by Ookla®, the global leader in fixed broadband and mobile network testing applications. Vi remains committed to play its role in accelerating the realization of the Digital India vision of the government.

In line with its commitment to providing its customers with simple and convenient products, Vi has curated an optimum range of feature rich plans for both voice and data. Customers can avail their benefits by selecting the plan best suited to their specific needs.

Users can visit www.myvi.in for more details, starting 25th November, 2021.

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Mobile Services

Airtel announces revised mobile tariffs

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NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel has always maintained that the mobile Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) needs to be at Rs 200 and ultimately at Rs 300, so as to provide a reasonable return on capital that allows for a financially healthy business model.

We also believe that this level of ARPU will enable the substantial investments required in networks and spectrum. Even more important, this will give Airtel the elbow room to roll out 5G in India.

Therefore, as a first step, we are taking the lead in rebalancing our tariffs during the month of November. Accordingly our new tariffs as indicated below will come into effect from November 26, 2021.

Airtel’s New Prepaid Tariffs

Current Price (Rs) Validity New Price (Rs) Benefits
Tariffed Voice Plans
79 28 days 99 50% more talktime of Rs 99, 200MB data

1p/sec voice tariff

Unlimited Voice Bundles
149 28 days 179 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 2 GB data
219 28 days 265 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 1 GB/day data
249 28 days 299 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 1.5 GB/day data
298 28 days 359 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 2 GB/day data
399 56 days 479 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 1.5 GB/day data
449 56 days 549 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 2 GB/day data
379 84 days 455 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 6 GB data
598 84 days 719 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 1.5 GB/day data
698 84 days 839 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 2 GB/day data
1498 365 days 1799 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 24 GB data
2498 365 days 2999 Unlimited calling, 100 SMS/day, 2 GB/day data
Data Top-ups
48 Unlimited 58 3 GB data
98 Unlimited 118 12 GB data
251 Unlimited 301 50 GB data
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