On the first day of 4G spectrum auction of four rounds yesterday, bids worth Rs 77,000 crore were placed by telecom companies. A total of 37 per cent of the spectrum by quantity and 19 per cent by value was sold by the end of the first day.
Government is likely to garner revenues beyond its muted expectation from 4G spectrum auction, but
the mop-up would be a fraction of the Rs 3.92-trillion worth of airwaves put up for sale.
Coming five years after the 2016 auctions, during the much-awaited 4G spectrum bidding, Reliance Jio emerged as the most active participant.
Likely to be one of the shortest spectrum auctions in recent times, officials said the process could be wrapped up as early as Tuesday in another round or two, displaying a lack of appetite for premium bands like 700 MHz and 2500 MHz.
The 700 MHz band, considered ideal for internal coverage, had gone unsold in the 2016 auctions as well, after which the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) had reduced its price by 40 per cent.
In the 2016 spectrum auctions, the government had earned Rs 65,789 crore. In the Union Budget 2020-21, the revenue target from communications services was Rs 44,000 crore.