India’s Cabinet yesterday approved the third revival package for state-owned telco BSNL with a total outlay of Rs 89,047 crore (approximately$10.79 billion).
“The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, today approved the third revival package for BSNL with a total outlay of Rs 89,047 crore,” it said, according to a PTI report from New Delhi.
Also, the authorised capital of BSNL will be increased from Rs 1,50,000 crore to Rs 2,10,000 crore.
“With this revival package, BSNL will emerge as a stable telecom service provider focused on providing connectivity to remotest parts of India,” statement added.
The package comprises allotment of premium wireless frequencies 700 MHz band spectrum worth Rs 46,338.6 crore; 70 MHz of frequencies in 3300 MHz band worth Rs 26,184.2 crore; frequencies in 26 GHz band worth Rs 6,564.93 crore; in 2500 MHz band worth Rs 9,428.2 crore and Rs 531.89 crore for miscellaneous items.
Meanwhile, a Reuters report added that the development comes days after BSNL partnered with top software company Tata Consultancy Services to help deploy 4G networks across the country at a time when larger rivals were rolling out next-generation 5G networks.
Debt-laden BSNL, according to Reuters, is grappling with poor infrastructure and has posted losses for the past 12 years. The losses narrowed to Rs. 69.82 billion in the year ended March 2022 from Rs. 74.41 billion a year ago.
The company has also been struggling to win customers in the face of intense price competition from Reliance Industries-owned Reliance Jio Infocomm, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea.