BSNL cancels Huawei deal; launches EV-DO tender

20 Mar 2006

State-owned operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has revealed plans to launch a tender for 2.5 million new CDMA 1xEV-DO mobile lines to replace a cancelled order for a million lines from China’s Huawei Technologies. The new tender will open on 25 April and Lucent, Nortel, Motorola, Ericsson and ZTE are expected to bid in conjunction with local partners. The bidder must have experience of supplying a minimum one million lines of CDMA equipment, including mobile switching centres, base stations and core network technology. The EV-DO network will offer typical speeds of between 300kbps and 500kbps, with theoretical top speeds of 2Mbps.

Last week BSNL scrapped its agreement with Huawei due to delays in the delivery of equipment. It is not yet clear whether Huawei, which had partnered with Himachal Futuristic Communications Ltd (HFCL) for the project, will be allowed to bid again.