USD1bn rural broadband subsidy on the cards?

3 Jun 2011

India’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) is to offer a subsidy of up to INR50 billion (USD1.1 billion) from the country’s Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) to operators looking to provide broadband services in rural regions of the country. The Indian Economic Times reports that between INR20 billion and INR50 billion will be allocated from the fund, and it is understood that the ministry has already floated the draft tender, calling for feedback from interested parties. Under the USOF-led ‘Rural Wireline Broadband’ scheme a total of 261,413 broadband connections and 2,506 kiosks have reportedly been deployed in India’s rural and remote regions so far.