Panel asks govt to announce 5G spectrum policy by Dec-end

Panel suggests setting up a standing committee to advise on building infrastructure for 5G spectrum tech

Rhik Kundu
Updated23 Aug 2018
The Panel suggested 5G commercial rollout in India by 2020. Photo: Mint
The Panel suggested 5G commercial rollout in India by 2020. Photo: Mint

Mumbai: A top panel formed by the central government to outline a road map for 5G telecom services has recommended additional spectrum for its rollout.

The steering committee headed by Stanford University professor A.J. Paulraj on Thursday submitted the report, Making India 5G Ready, to telecom secretary Aruna Sundararajan.

The report suggested the government should announce its 5G policy by the end of December, besides setting up a standing committee to advise on building the infrastructure for spectrum technology.

“India’s spectrum allocation for public wireless services should be enhanced significantly on various frontiers to realize digital infrastructure as a core utility under Digital India,” the report said, adding that most guidelines on regulatory matters be promulgated by March 2019 to facilitate early 5G deployment.

The key recommendations and action plan included recommendations on spectrum policy, regulatory policy, education and awareness promotion, application and use case labs, participation in international standards, development of application layer standards, and major 5G trials. Mint has seen a copy of the report.

“The cost of spectrum relative to per-capita GDP is high. It is important that India builds a more favourable spectrum policy in the 5G era. The economic impact of 5G is expected to be over 1 trillion dollars,” the report added.

The Paulraj panel was formed last year to recommend policy initiatives and action plans for 5G roll out. “5G is a massive new opportunity...it can be leveraged for major societal transformation,” said Paulraj, adding he expected the commercial roll out of 5G by 2020.

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