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Next leg of telecom reforms will be rolled out in a couple of months

Communications minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Monday said the next leg of telecom reforms will be rolled out in a couple of months, focusing on user protection.

The announcement from the minister comes after the department of telecommunications (DoT) in May launched the Sanchar Saathi portal to help users track their lost mobile phones and can check numbers associated with an identity.

“We are always putting our reforms in two categories. One is structural reform. Second is procedural reform. We have taken up some very important points both on the structural and procedural part. And we have now focused on user protection,” Vaishnaw said, adding that the reforms will be rolled out in the a couple of months.

“We are working with industry on how to bring more reforms with regard to user safety,” the minister said.

Among key reforms, the government is also planning to reduce the number of SIM cards issued on a single ID from the current nine, according to government sources.

Last year, the DoT simplified the right-of-way (RoW) norms to expedite 5G infrastructure rollout.

On the 5G rollout, the minister said the telecom industry has invested about Rs 2.25 trillion. “The telecom companies have rolled out over 270,000 5G sites,” Vaishnaw said.

The government is also working to develop a fully optical communications system with zero latency, which can be a big advancement for telemedicine.

With regard to semiconductor manufacturing, Vaishnaw said the groundbreaking ceremony of Micron Technology unit will be done in next 40-45 days.

“The plant of applied materials, which is investing about $400 million. They have also started working on the site preparation and very soon the groundbreaking ceremony will take place,” Vaishnaw added. Financial Express

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