The Ministry of Communications stated that the reforms would boost the spread of broadband and telecom connectivity in the country
The Cabinet unveiled a slew of reforms in the telecom sector, granting relief to consumers. As per Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, no more paperwork would be required for obtaining a new mobile connection. Also, consumers would not need fresh Know Your Customers (KYC) for shifting between prepaid and postpaid connections.
The Ministry of Communications stated that the reforms would boost the spread of broadband and telecom connectivity in the country. The reforms would be in accordance with the vision of a robust telecom sector of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
According to the ministry, the measures are “also expected to boost 4G proliferation, infuse liquidity” as well as enable an environment for investment in 5G networks.
Here are the salient points of the reforms that have been initiated for the mobile users and telecom companies:
― The Union Cabinet approved five procedural and nine structural reforms regarding the telecom sector on Wednesday, 15 September.
― Spectrum sharing has been declared free.
― The definition of AGR (adjusted gross revenue) has been rationalised by the Cabinet. The payment of statutory levies now excludes the non-telecom revenue of telecom companies.
― A four-year moratorium for payment of AGR dues for all telecom companies has been approved. According to Vaishnaw, the move will lead to significant cash flow for the companies without impacting government revenues.
― The Cabinet has approved 100 percent Foreign Direct Investment through the automatic route in the telecom sector.
― All KYC forms are to be digitised from now onwards.
― No fresh KYC would be needed for switching from postpaid to prepaid mobile connections or vice versa.
― The spectrum auction, which is set to be conducted in the last quarter of the financial year, would have an auction calendar in place.
― 4G and 5G core network technology will be designed and manufactured in the country.
Keywords: telecom sector reforms, telecom sector India, Ashwini Vasihnaw, 4G technology India, 5G technology India, KYC digitisation