Auction of 3G license, that is long pending on cards, is likely to get delayed again as Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has failed to finalize the hiring of a consultant for carrying out 3G auction, told us a source close to the situation.
Pakistan Telecommunication Authority had advertised for the need of a consultant, of an international repute, for procurement of 3G license auction in Pakistan.
A highly reliable source, who has direct information on the matter, told ProPakistani that PTA failed to finalize the consultant as all three firms that had submitted their bids were disqualified on various grounds.
Reportedly, one firm failed to submit the processing fee and was hence disqualified. Another firm was from India and was disqualified for security reasons. Third company, which had successfully met the technical requirements failed to impress the authority with its financial feasibility. If source is to be believed then this third firm, which was from Great Britain, had asked for commissions based on slabs in accordance with total selling price of three 3G licenses.
All these details were disclosed during a high-level meeting recently that was presided by Finance Minister Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.
A source who had attended the meeting confirmed ProPakistani that PTA Chairman told the meeting that selection of consultant went unsuccessful and now authority, if allowed, can hand-pick the consultant firm to procure the 3G auction process. For this regulator might seek ITU’s help in getting a consultant firm.
Another source said that PTA might start over the process of hiring of consultant from scratch. Advertisements will be published in international newspapers for the third time for the purpose.
Hiring of consultant, which is mandatory as per PPRA rules for auction of any government resource/service, has become a deadlock for the authority. It merits mentioning here that this was the second time that PTA had advertised for the hiring of a consultant firm for 3G license auction, which went unsuccessful.