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BSNL not to re-float Rs35,000 crore GSM tender news
22 February 2010

State-run telecom major Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) is not keen on re-floating its trouble-hit 93-million-lines GSM tender. Instead, it may reduce the size of the tender or give it to the company's existing equipment vendors.

''BSNL does not need to scrap or re-issue its Rs35,000-crore GSM lines tender, as suggested by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), as the existing tender conditions already have a clause that the company can reduce the size of the tender on its own as per requirements,'' chairman and managing director Kuldeep Goel told Business Standard in New Delhi.

''The tender was to be executed in three phases. Under the tender provisions, we can limit the tender to just the first phase, for 31 million lines. Alternatively, it can be reduced to 50 per cent of the total quantity - about 46 million lines, or 50 per cent of the second and third phase - 31 million lines,'' he said.

Alcatel Lucent and Huawei are among the existing vendors of the company.

The PSU has been steadily losing market share in the highly competitive mobile market in India. The current market share of BSNL stands at 12 per cent.

Meanwhile, BSNL plans to add 2.2 crore subscribers next fiscal and may venture into the mobile banking and advertising space. "Next year (2010-11) we are keeping a target of 22 million mobile connections - 20 million 2G connections and two million 3G," BSNL's director (consumer mobility) R K Agarwal told PTI in Bangalore today.

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BSNL not to re-float Rs35,000 crore GSM tender