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Consolidation has come at a high price in India with $59 billion wiped off: Sunil Mittal

Bharti Airtel Chairman Sunil Mittal said the telecom industry is consolidating down to 2-to-3 operators the world over but the process hasn’t happened in an orderly way in India and has come at a heavy price with a whopping $59 billion wiped off from the sector. He said, is a heavy capital-intensive industry, requires laying of fibre and heavy investment in networks. Telecom levies are as high as 37% Spectrum fee, licence fee are very high coupled with GST at 18%, said Mittal. Taking a dig at the government, he said, if the revenue maximisation is not the aim, then why is there so much entanglement in litigation, and please let’s resolve this. Mittal also built a strong case for boosting the viability of tower companies, going forward. Tower companies need to be made viable, and common tower infrastructure collaboration between the three operators is important, he said.

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