BSNL looks set for WiMAX grant

25 Nov 2010

Having last month complained about a lack of compensation for its activities in expanding telecoms services to areas where there are none, state-owned operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL), will be handed an INR23.95 billion (USD521 million) grant to allow it to complete its rollout of wireless broadband services, according to India’s Economic Times. The report claims that in the wake of BSNL suggesting that it could not continue to roll out rural WiMAX services on a no-profit/loss basis without financial support the state will make the funds available, albeit with a number of conditions. It is understood that the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) in a 16 November communication to the telco called on it to rework its estimates for its WiMAX initiative and spread the costs of the project over a 20-year period. Further, BSNL has been asked to examine infrastructure sharing deals with other operators with a view to lowering costs.