The government is planning to hold the largest ever spectrum auction of 3,000 Mhz of radiowaves in the upcoming sale, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.
"Spectrum above 3000 MHz will be put up for auction for the first time in the forthcoming auction," telecom minister Manoj Sinha said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
In the previous auction in 2016, the government had put a total of 2,354.55 megahertz of mobile airwaves for sale in all bands of 700 Mhz, 800 Mhz, 900 Mhz, 1800 Mhz, 2100 Mhz and 2300 Mhz, cumulatively valued at around Rs 5.63 trillion at base price.
However, nearly 60 per cent of the radiowaves, including premium 4G bands, remained unsold in that auction.
"The government has sought recommendations from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on the applicable Reserve Price and related issues for auction of right to use of spectrum in the frequency bands 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz, 2500 MHz, 3300-3400 MHz and 3400-3600 MHz. Recommendations from TRAI are awaited," Sinha said.
In response to query on auction of spectrum for 5G services, Sinha said that the standardisation work in respect of 5G technology is in progress in the International Telecom Union (ITU), Geneva, Switzerland under the official name of IMT (International Mobile Telecommunication) 2020.
"The standardisation is expected to be completed around the year 2020 after which the frequency bands, already auctioned and proposed to be auctioned, can be utilised for deployment of 5G technology," he said.