During the speech for Indian Union Budget 2022-23 in parliament on Tuesday, Finance Minister (FM) Nirmala Sitharaman said that the country will auction 5G airwaves this year. It will bring about a roll out of the next-generation telecoms service in 2022-23.
“Spectrum auctions will be conducted in 2022 to facilitate the roll-out of 5G mobile services within 2022-23 by private telecom providers,” Sitharaman said.
The telecommunications sector in general and 5G, in particular, can enable growth and offer job opportunities, she added.
“A scheme for design-led manufacturing will be launched to build a strong ecosystem for 5G as part of the production-linked incentive scheme,” the FM said.
To enable affordable broadband and mobile services in rural and remote areas, five per cent of annual collections under the universal service obligation fund will be allocated, she said.
“This will promote R&D and commercialisation of technologies and solutions. Our mission is that all villages and their residents should have the same access to e-services, communication facilities and digital resources as urban areas and their residents,” the FM said.
The contract for laying optical fibre in all villages will be awarded through the BharatNet project in PPP mode in 2022-23, the minister added.
“Completion is expected in 2025. Measures will be taken to enable better and more efficient use of the optical fibre,” the FM said.
(With inputs from agencies)