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Telecom reforms not enough, industry must step up its game too: Minister

Telecom Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw

More reforms will be brought into the Indian telecom sector but the industry must reciprocate by doing the needful to improve quality of service, Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister for Communications, Electronics & Information Technology and Railways, said.

He said that the initiatives cannot be one sided.

While addressing the Annual Flagship Event 2022 of Digital Infrastructure Providers Association, he said that the journey of 5G would be an interesting one and that many countries took multiple years to reach 40 to 50 per cent coverage.

“But we are targeting a very aggressive timeline and the government has given a target of 80 per cent coverage in short time frame,” he said.

The minister also advised the telecom department to approach the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) in this regard. He said that the quality-of-service parameters must be 3X or 4X of what it is today.

The government has already approved Rs 12,195 crore ($ 1.65 billion) production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for telecom and networking products. Last year, 31 companies comprising 16 companies categorised as micro small and medium enterprises (MSME) and 15 non-MSMEs (eight domestic and seven global companies) have been given a go-ahead under the PLI Scheme. To drive the development of 6G technology, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has also developed a sixth generation (6G) innovation group.

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