Spectrum auction 2021 concludes, fetches bids worth Rs 77,814.80 crore

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New delhi: The Ministry of Communications on Tuesday (March 2, 2021) informed that the spectrum auction 2021 fetched bids worth Rs 77,814.80 crore, which according to them was ‘better than expected’.

The second and the concluding day of the spectrum auction witnessed incremental bids for Rs 668.20 crore.

“The value of the spectrum for which there are winning bids is Rs 77,814.80 crore. Hence, incremental bids for Rs 668.20 crore were made today”, said Anshu Prakash, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications.

The auction began on Monday and looked on Tuesday at 12.45 PM, after

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a total of 6 rounds of bidding. The e-auction was based on the Simultaneous Multiple Round Ascending Auction (SMRA) methodology.

Anshu Prakash also informed that bidding took place for spectrum in 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz and 2300 MHz bands. The total quantity of spectrum for which right to use has been acquired in these bands is 855.60 MHz.

The participants did not bid in 700 MHz and 2500 MHz bands.

Three bidders – Bharti Airtel Ltd, Vodafone Idea Ltd, and Reliance JioInfocommLtd – held in the auction.

The bidder-wise details of the quantity of spectrum acquired and amounts are payable as follows:

According to the Ministry of Communications, a total quantity of 2308.80 MHz spectrum was put to auction, including spectrum that is expiring up to December 2021. Of this quantity, bids were received for 855.60MHz of the spectrum. Excluding spectrum in 700MHz and 2500MHz bands, this is about 60% of the spectrum put to auction.

In the 2016 spectrum auction, where there were seven bidders, the spectrum sold was 41% by the quantity and 12% by value of the total spectrum put to auction. The corresponding figures in the 2021 spectrum auction are 37% and 19% respectively, with 3 participants.

The quantity of spectrum put to auction and the spectrum acquired in different bands is as follows:

The Ministry of Communications informed that the Spectrum Usage Charges (SUC) for the spectrum acquired in this auction will be payable at the rate of 3% of Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) of the licensee, excluding revenue from wireline services.

“The auction is noticed and these provisional results are subject to scrutiny and approval by the Government,” it added.