Telecom is a very capital-intensive business and roll-out of new technologies such as 5G, M2M/IoT, Edge Data Centre, Wi-Fi will require huge investments and according to Digital infrastructure Providers Association, enhancement of scope of IP-1, without any licensing, is the only way forward for bringing in the desired investments into the sector. Various reports and research also confirm that infrastructure sharing can bring in significant cost benefits to the tune of 40-50% for the sector.
Further, not only on 13th March 2020 or vide said recent recommendations, TRAI has underlined the need for enhancement of IP-1 scope at number of occasions in the past as well, vide its recommendations dated 2-Feb-2018, 9-Mar-2018, 20-Jan-2017, 6-Jan-2015 etc. however, it is very disappointing that the matter remains unaddressed and yet to see the light of the day.
“Encourage and facilitate sharing of active infrastructure by enhancing the scope of Infrastructure Providers (IP) and promoting and incentivizing deployment of common sharable, passive as well as active, infrastructure.”
In view of the same, DIPA reiterates its request and urge Department Of Telecommunications (DoT) for immediate enhancement of scope of IP-1 registration by urgent implementation of TRAI recommendations dated 13th March 2020, without any further delay.
T.R.Dua, Director-General, Digital Infrastructure Providers Association (DIPA) said,” One extremely important demand of industry has been kept pending regarding the issue of Enhancement of Scope of IPs-1 as enshrined in National Digital Communications Policy -2018(NDCP-2018). Enhancement of scope for IP-1 registration has been recommended by TRAI also on numerous occasions in the past 5-6 years including the recommendations dated 13- Mar-2020. As the nation is on the cusp of experiencing 5G technology , it is right time to review the regulatory environment to make it conducive for active sharing. ‘Global Connectivity Report 2022’ states that “Promoting the sharing of infrastructure can reduce costs. Estimates suggest that sharing antenna sites can save operators up to 40 per cent on both capital expenditure and 5G deployment”. It is therefore prudent for the country to latch on to this global best practice by enhancing the scope of IPs-1.”