BSNL, Bharti want 6% uniform licence fee, Rcom differs

BSNL, Bharti want 6% uniform licence fee, Rcom differs

New Delhi: Two major telecom players — Bharti Airtel and BSNL — want an uniform licence fee of 6% on revenues from all services like mobile, landline, long distance telephony, ISP among others.

A Department of Telecom panel had recommended 8.5% as the uniform licence fee.

Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communication, however, says licence fee should be decided based on the revenue slab of the company based on gross or adjusted gross revenue and the incumbent operators should be asked to pay higher licence fee for holding excess spectrum beyond contractual amount of 6.2 Mhz of spectrum for GSM players and 5 Mhz of spectrum for CDMA operators.

The operators responded to TRAI consultation paper on ‘overall spectrum management and review of licence terms and conditions´.

At present, fixed line and mobile operators pay 6-10%, depending on the circles, as licence fee while NLD, ILD and VSAT as well as Internet with Net telephony paying only 6% while pure ISPs pay no licence fee.

DoT mooted the idea of uniform licence fee after allegation came against RCom that the operator was passing higher revenue earning services to the low licence fee category thereby causing loss to the the exchequer.

BSNL and Bharti Airtel said that uniform licence fee will reduce the arbitrage and ensure the level playing field. Further, this will be easy to implement in a transparent manner and will maximise the revenues to the exchequer.