Hutch Essar and 17 others apply for NLD/ILD licence

14 Mar 2006

Indian cellco Hutchison Essar is among 18 companies to have applied for a long-distance or international licence, according to Reuters quoting Shakeel Ahmad, Junior Minister for Communications. Ahmad told parliament that the Mumbai-based operator applied for a national long-distance concession, whilst five firms have applied for both long-distance and international permits. In January the state slashed the licence fees for national long-distance licences services from INR1 billion (USD22.4 million) to INR25 million (USD562,300) and lowered the entry charge for international services to INR25 million, from INR250 million, in a bid to ramp up competition; annual fees for both concessions have also been cut to 6% of annual gross revenues, down from 15%.