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Operators urge government to provide clear roadmap for addressing key issues

April 03, 2019
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The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has urged the government to provide a clear roadmap to address several issues including spectrum charges and licence fee which plague the sector in order to ease its financial burden.

The COAI said that the benefits for the industry would be sizable if these issues are addressed by the new government post elections within six to nine months. Further, a clear roadmap would provide a positive signal to both industry and investors.

As per COAI, the definition of adjusted gross revenue (AGR) should be reviewed to include revenue from licensed activities only. It urged the Department of Telecommunication (DoT) to adopt Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) recommendations regarding the determination of AGR.

Further, the COAI said that income from interest, dividend, capital gains from the sale of fixed assets, gains from forex fluctuation, income from rent, insurance claims, and distributors margin should be excluded from revenue during calculation of licence fee and spectrum usage charges (SUC). It also pushed for not including revenue from the sale of handsets and devices in the AGR.

In addition to reforms in the calculation of AGR, the COAI also demanded deductions of lease line/bandwidth charges, pass-through charges, refund of accumulated unutilised input tax credit, and alignment of bank guarantees with licence fee and SUC payouts.


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