Millennium Post

'Vodafone Idea not in favour of 5G spectrum auction before 2020'

Vodafone Idea not in favour of 5G spectrum auction before 2020

New Delhi: India's largest telecom operator Vodafone Idea Ltd said Wednesday that the auction of 5G spectrum should not be held before 2020 as the industry needs time to develop India-specific use cases for the next-generation technology.

Vodafone Idea Chief Technology Officer Vishant Vora told reporters that the full integration of the two telecom networks post the mega merger last year is "on track" and expected to be completed by June 2020.

On the globally contentious issue of use of communications equipment of Chinese vendors, Vora said that the Indian government has not taken a position on such deployments, and asserted that the company will comply with the rules of the country.

"Within Indian context, the government has not taken a position unlike some other countries....Australia, New Zealand, and the US...have taken a clear position...Of course, we will follow whatever the Indian government decides and we will work with the government to ensure that India's strategic needs and security are fully looked after," he said.

Last year, Idea and Vodafone completed the merger of their India operations to create the country's largest telecom operator to take on competition from rivals Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel. British telecom major Vodafone holds 45.1 stake in the combined entity, while Kumar Mangalam Birla-led Aditya Birla Group controls 26 per cent and Idea shareholders own 28.9 per cent.



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