STAFF REPORT IBD: ICT experts recommended the government to immediately auction 3G/4G licences in the country as the inaction in this regard would hamper growth in the telecom sector as well as causing losses to national economy. They also urged the government to focus on setting obligatory performance benchmarks rather than mere generate revenues during the licence auction process.
The experts were discussing the subject at the SDPIs Study Group meeting on ICT with emphasis on “Adoption of 3G/4G technology by Pakistan”.
Salman Ansari, CEO Telecom Consultants, while sharing global technology trends, said that growth in fixed line broadband is shrinking whereas share of wireless broadband. He said, currently there is confusion and lack of clarity in Pakistan over adopting 3G technology or having leap frog by jumping directly to 4G technology. He stressed for a hybrid approach arguing that 3G mobile broadband is an evolutionary process to optimize current assets.
Shahid Mahmood, CEO Interactive Group of Companies, deliberated that further delay in 3G auction will adversely impact economic growth potential that could be otherwise realized immediately.
The participants underscored the need for spectrum reformation in telecom sector with a possibility of taking back SPTV spectrum, striking a balance between upfront auction value and obligations.

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