Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has contracted “InterConnect Communication”, a consultancy firm based out of UK, for provision of consultancy services for upcoming 3G/4G auction in the country, we have learned from sources who are aware of the development.
PTA, on directions of Ishaq Dar, Finance Minister of Pakistan, is aiming to conduct another round of 3G/4G auction in Pakistan with-in next few months.
Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, in order to speed up the process, recently finalized the consultancy firm for assistance in the auction of 3G and 4G spectrum.
A PTA spokesperson confirmed ProPakistani that an agreement with InterConnect Communication — for provision of consultancy services for auction of 3G and 4G spectrum — has been signed.
It maybe recalled that Pakistan sold four 3G and one 4G licenses in April 2014 for a total value of USD 1.182 Billion, while one block in 1800MHz and another in 850MHz was not sold then, which PTA is aiming to sell through an auction in next few months.
Any future 3G and 4G auction in Pakistan will be hugely challenged by variety of taxes on telecom sector
Our sources tell that InterConnect Communication has already begun its working to study the dynamics and details of Pakistani market. After this initial homework, consultants will assist PTA in preparing IM for the spectrum auction.
It won’t be out of place to mention that any future 3G and 4G auction in Pakistan will be hugely challenged by variety of taxes on telecom sector due to which mobile phones companies are reluctant to invest any further in their businesses in general and in spectrum in specific.
In fact mobile phone companies have already signaled to boycott upcoming 3G / 4G auction after recent taxes on data and other telecom services. Telcos are also concerned about government’s non-serious and stubborn behavior towards telecom sector.
With decreasing revenues of telecom sector, all thanks to inapt government policies, it will be interesting to see PTA will be able to generate any interest in local operators (let alone any new foreign operator) for the planned 3G and 4G auction.