The Union Cabinet gave its approval to the spectrum sharing guidelines based on the recommendations of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).
The decision is part of Union Government’s commitment to improve spectral efficiency and quality of telecom service across the country.
As per the TRAI guidelines
- Spectrum sharing will be allowed only for the access service providers in the first instance in a Licensed Service Area (LSA). In this case both spectrum license holders should have spectrum in the same band and have paid market price for it.
- Access of all spectrums including traded spectrums will be sharable provided that both license holders having spectrum in the same band.
- Leasing of spectrum between different service providers has been prohibited.
- In case of charging Spectrum Usage Charges (SUC) license holders should share their entire spectrum holding in the particular band in the entire LSA.
Implications: Presently, telecom operators are allowed to share passive infrastructure like mobile towers only. This decision will pave way for telecom operators to share their unused spectrum which in turn will enhance network quality and reduce operational costs.