Prime Minister Approves 3G Policy in Pakistan

Prime MInister Yousaf Raza Gilani chairing a meeting on 3G licence and Grey Traffic at the PM house on Wednesday. PHOTO: PIDLong awaited approval 3G policy has reportedly been approved by Yousaf Raza Gilani, Prime Minister of Pakistan, reported Express Tribune.


After PM’s approval the policy will now be forwarded to Cabinet Committee for the final approval from cabinet, before it’s handed over to Ministry of Information Technology for execution.

According to reports, Mr. Gilani chaired this meeting today on 3G, Grey traffic and Additional Spectrum auction for Wireless Local Loop here at Prime Minister’s House where it was agreed that new international players as well as existing operators would also be invited for Instaphone license auction being the sixth licensee in the country.

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 Ghos Baksh Mehr, Minister for Privatization and Dr Asim Hussain, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources.

It was decided that three blocks of 10 MHZs 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 start operation only after March 2013 when moratorium on new licensing, as per Government’s agreement with Etisalat, would expire.

More spectrums would be made available for 3/4 G services and offered for auction with the provision that winners of such auction will receive amended licenses and allocated frequencies by March 2013 and as such will be able to start their services thereafter.


In order to ensure professionalism and transparency, it was also decided that a committee of Public Sector stakeholders including representatives from Ministries of Finance, Information Technology, PTA and representative of Frequency Allocation Board would supervise auction process. PTA would devise an appropriate methodology to conduct varying component of this auction as decided under the supervision of the Committee.

Via Express Tribune


    • AOA
      actually u may know that many of new investor are very much interested to come Pakistan for telecommunication business (vodafone, Airtel)
      Ministry of IT was decided few years back no to enter new firms into Pakistan…

      Instaphone already had license (but not opreational) so if it want to come in 3G field that’s why it and already operating ones welcomed but no new one.

    • Instaphone license was cancelled due to non-payment of license fees to PTA.

      Now Instaphone will be given to someone else.

      All local and international companies can participate for Instaphone license auction.

  • wow it is big news i am bored to use slow speed edge and gprs wifi is better but not every where available hope it come soon as soon

  • yes great news.. but 3G aaty aaty mazed 1 year tu lag he gye ga and also i think compnies internet charges b increz kar dain ge

  • 3G is thing of the past. time is for 4G. Wimax bhi end of life ho gays heh. lte is future. all Wimax leg operators must move to LTE

  • Good news but Pakistan main BayHayeyen Tofan ke tara bhar jae ge.

    Is technology kay asraat Mashray par kafi boray paren gay.

  • i didn’t get,what if the existence operator succeeds in the bid?
    will they also starts their service after march 2013 or soon after they get license?

  • AOA license auction kardia hai ab dekho kab tak aata hai #G wait wait karte karte baal safaid hogay hain wese jaldi aayga 1 arab dollar ki game hai goverment bhoki hai is waqt hahahahahah…

  • very alarming for me at least. 3 licenses means two will have to go .less competition and more job loss

  • We’re too late, So it’s time to skip 3G and invest directly in 4G, Or we’ll never see it till the end of this decade, as the companies will first suckle out 3G completely then will go for 4G, and it’ll be too late again.

  • Its a pretty good step towards technology. 3rd and 4th generation access will cause no time wasting in see technology videos on youtube and within no time books could be easily downloaded. These would be just a start of its advantages.

  • I don’t know why you all are after 4G. How many of you actually own a 4G handset?

    And 4G LTE consumes more battery than 3G – which consumes more battery than 2G-based networks (which is what we have today). The only thing is that in 4G LTE, you’ll get a higher download speed capability and perhaps lower pings – but what is the internet speed of the average internet user? 1Mbps?

    Do you think you’ll benefit w/ 1Mbps over 4G, which can be used to transfer data far, far faster?

    It’s just like crying a river for fiber optic networks but getting stuck at mediocre DSL speeds.

    And you need another handset for 4G services.

    Who’s going to pay for all this? Not me. Pakistan has FTTU but just look how underutilized it is with all the caps in place (a la Nayatel).

    • Now this is what we call sensible comments, else every other person is after numbers, like which one is bigger 3 or 4 , ok its 4 so implement 4g… they regardless of the limitations bundled with 4g start giving lecture on why its better than 3g.

      • abc tho ur concerns are very geniune but please do remember the dynamics of data usage is changing very dramatically over time, so instead of thinkin just short-medium term, it makes more sense if we as Pakistanis start thinking long term. For that it is important that instead of launching 3G we focus on infrastructural imporvements for LTE, so even if the operators pass on the costs of implementing this network, they have a long term timeline to do so….

        • Economics says produce those goods which the consumers actually need.

          Do we need 4G? Our internet penetration on more reliable mediums isn’t very high. Most of the subscribers are located in the rural areas. Look who your customers are, and then make the business decision.

          In the urban centers, people may own 3G handsets. How many of us actually own a 4G LTE-enabled handset? Not me.

          Since I don’t own the handset, nor does anyone else, and the market has NO LTE-based device, do you think it’s wise for the operators to invest in a technology that isn’t even known to many especially since it’s costly, and hardly anyone will use it, let alone utilize adequate capacity?

          Oh – and did I mention that we’ve got a low ARPU so funds generated may not necessarily be sufficient to invest in 4G. The fact that the operators have shown interest in investing in 3G is a big thing.

          And 4G isn’t everywhere in the world. If it’s not in many places in Europe or the US, then why are we asking for it?

          When we had Wateen’s roll-out, just exactly how expensive was it? Wateen says that they’ll transmit television signals over the airwaves (Wimax can). Does it?

          PTCL’s IPTV service – underutilized.

          3G – I don’t know, but as far as 4G is concerned, it will definitely be underutilized. Who’s going to use it? Long term is good – but will it make a return on the investments of the telcos? They’re here to make profits, not spoon-feed us, you know.

          This has been a long-enough post so I’m going to stop here.

  • finally, so which company u guys like to see in Pakistn. I want anyone from Vodafone (UK), O2 (UK), T-Mobile (Germany) or Orange (France). Lets see what happens.

  • Good Move by Prime Minister now Telco Operator Turn because the cost of operation 3G is very high and expected that auction value will be very high so let’s see what happend..Best of like for all stakeholder of 3G in Pakistan.

  • it,s good decesion of govt 4g handset are expensive and middle class people can,t offored this but 3g hndset is nt expnsv and everyone can buy this first use 3g and then go 4wrd for 4g but the 3g is coming so late after march 2013 suck this since we are waiting for 8years and now finaly it,s wll avail in pak thanyou pm gilani and other person who,s cooprate with gilani…pihli 3g use karo pir 4g ke chathari kawo ube 3g use nahe kia hai bati karti ho 4g..i have wimax and i can use 4g likin muji dosri buddy ke be parwa hai 3g mnthly net package 1200rs 8gb and 1800rs unlimited 800rs 4gb.

  • I can’t believe the number of trolls here!! This just says the policy got approved, no word on the auction and if any operators are interested in purchasing it. No one will be stupid enough to invest half a billion dollars in to a market where arpu is a mere $2.5. There is no demand for 3G either…..

    If you think that 50 people on Propak are a good enough reason to launch 3g, you all need to wake up and smell the java. Take WiMax, Pakistan has the biggest WiMax network in the world… yet the number of user is do dismal it doesnt even make any top list.

    Bottom line… no 3G for you cry babies

    • hahaha agreed if they arnt ready to pay smfn out of thier pockets hw cum they expect the operators to invest dat much huge amount of whoz rturn they wil get in years….

  • gyzzz 4 ur knowldge only 3 compnies will get licens mobilink is conformied one of them b/c they have almost upgraded there system to 3g. faislbad lahore ismlbad sahiwal multan these regions are completed. i job in ETPS. we have tender to upgrade and maintence of their sites. now they are waiting 4 bid of licens.

  • Just anyone tell me when operators will be allowed to launch 3G? after march 2013 or this condition is only for new operator?

    • Only the operator buying our Instaphone will have to wait till 2013, rest of operators who purchase a license will be allowed to start the services right after acquiring the contract.

  • no omair as per my understanding the condition of 2013 is just for new operators as far as our existing operators are concern they will be able to start the service as soon as they get licencse.

    correct me if i am wrong

  • great news, 3g in pakistan will start, thats like our dream is going to real. I will very happy to get 3g service and will feel lucky, because i will insha allah save upto 98% on my calls and also i will use fring for vedio calls to pakistan as i am in saudi arabia

  • abhi to sirf batay hi batay hai jo kab say sun rahay hain yeh ho raha hai vo ho raha hai per ab tak kisi ko yeh pata nahi kay launch hoga kab..

  • It is great news for all pakistani.but we are very late to have 3g.u know what?in bangladesh we have almost 100% mobile coverage but yet have 3g .The TELETALK our one of the leading operator will start 3g within 26 march 2012.they already taken 3g license form is also agreat news for us.

  • BY PTA

    Auction Frequency Spectrum for Cellular Mobile Broadband Services Last Updated (Friday, 23 December 2011)

    Islamabad: In pursuance of the policy directive issued by Ministry of Information Technology (MOIT), Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) is planning to Auction Frequency Spectrum for Cellular Mobile Broadband Services. The license for this service will be technology neutral and the licensees be able to deploy any technology including 3G / 4G / LTE / any other upcoming technologies.

    The information Memorandum (IM) for auctioning process is being prepared by PTA. The auction will be held tentatively in March 2012 for which exact schedule will be issued later. The auction process will be overseen by a joint professional group (Auction Supervisory Committee) comprising of public sector stakeholders, including representatives of Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Information Technology, PTA and FAB etc. PTA has constituted a special committee for making preparations to conduct the auction in the most possible transparent manner.

    For the awareness and information of potential investors, PTA is also planning to hold Investors Conferences in Karachi and Islamabad. International Road Shows will also be organized. The exact schedule for this auction would be made available soon.

    It is pertinent to mention that the introduction of Cellular Mobile Broadband services in the country will initiate a new economic cycle in the country and accrue great benefits for the national economy. It will also usher in new era for proliferation of a number of new applications for data intensive value added services. This will greatly fulfill the requirement and demands of Cellular Mobile Phone subscribers and professionals who are eagerly waiting for this service.

    Muhammad Younis

    Director (PR)

  • ________ k bachay hain ministers -__________ ko mzza aata hai awwam ko tang krnay mein sirf licence dena hai or woh bhe denay mein inko maut aa rahi hai.

    [Comment Edited]

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