3G Policy be put before the Cabinet: Prime Minister

ISLAMABAD ( PAKISTAN )

Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani presided over a meeting on 3G and Grey traffic and Additional Spectrum auction for Wireless Local Loop here at Prime Minister’s House.

Ministry of Information Technology gave a presentation on recommendations formulated by Cabinet Committee comprising Dr.Hafeez Sheikh, Minister for Finance, Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for Water and Power, and Mr. Ghos Baksh Mehr, Minister for Privatization and Dr. Asim Hussain, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources.
The Prime Minister approved the 3G policy in principle and directed the Cabinet Committee to bring the policy before the Cabinet for its final approval.
The Cabinet committee recommendations pertain to the auction of 3G frequencies and defunct instaphone Licence along with allocated frequency simultaneously but in quick succession.
To encourage competition, new international players as well as existing operators would also be invited for instaphpne licence auction being the sixth of the existing licencee in the country and not a new licencee.
Furthermore it was decided that 3 blocks of 10 MHs each out of available 3G spectrums would be immediately offered for auction and existing operators can participate in this round as well. New players will also be invited but with provision that if new player is successful in bid then they would be eligible to resume operation only after March 2013 when moratorium on new licensing as per previous cabinet committee decision would expire.
It was also decided that more spectrum would be made available for 3/4 G services and offered for auction with the provision that winners of such auction will be amended licences and allocated frequencies by March 2013 and as such will be able to start their services thereafter.
It was also decided in order to ensure professionalism and transparency a committee of Public Sector stakeholders including representatives from Ministries of Finance, Information Technology, PTA and representative of Frequency Allocation Board to supervise auction process and PTA would devise an appropriate methodology to conduct varying component of this auction as decided under the supervision of the Committee.
On the issue of Grey Traffic, it was decided that Cabinet Committee would consider this issue and put the recommendations to the Prime Minister was also approval.

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