India, Bangladesh to compete in broadband

Posted on August 28, 2008  /  2 Comments

Bangladesh and India are set to compete for the same set of telecom investors with Bangladesh announcing auctions for Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) spectrum close on the heels of India unveiling its BWA policy.

However, while Bangladesh’s policy is designed to attract fresh competition by keeping its existing operators and their shareholders (foreign and Bangladeshi) out of the spectrum bids, India has opted for a different route.

India has restricted BWA bidding to only those who either hold an ISP or a unified access service (UAS) licence, thereby either forcing companies to acquire ISP/UAS licenses before the bidding or keeping away new entrants who are unable to acquire such licences due to price or time constraints.

“Other contrasts are equally striking and show up uncomfortable flaws with India’s auction guidelines,” says a telecom analyst. While India’s BWA guidelines are just four pages, Bangladesh’s is a 57-page invitation for applications for grant of licence. This includes a 30-page licence agreement and detailed terms of interconnection/tariffs.

Read the full story in The Times of India here.


  1. Why is keeping out existing operators seen as a good thing? This simply lessens competition for the licenses.

  2. Broadband of neither country will compete at the BWA (Actully WiMAX) front. The launch of 3G/HSPA in India and China will sharply reduce the cost of terminals. Once these two telecoms superpowers issue 3G licenses sometimes in early next year, the broadband bonanza will kick off everywhere in Asia as it has happened with GSM mobile. Everyone is invited! Stay tuned!!