PTA accused of delaying 3G licences auction

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STAFF REPORT IBD: The federal government has estimated to generate up to one billion dollars through 3G Licences auction, but Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) is delaying the auction as no new date has so far been finalised for the auction, Secretary Information Technology Farooq Awan told the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the National Assembly last week.
The meeting, chaired Nadeem Afzal Gondal, reviewed the audit accounts of telecommunication sector for 2004-05 and 2006-07.
The secretary IT alleged that despite giving assurance to Ministry of Information Technology, the PTA did not appoint consultant for the valuation of 3G licenses, which the government had earlier planned to auction in March 2012.
The PTA had given assurance on December 19, 2011, when the decision to auction the 3G licenses through international bidding was taken that bidding would be held by March, he added.
“But no consultant has so far been hired by the PTA after expiry of 80 days at a time when the government is desperate for cash,” he remarked.
The secretary also said that the government has been losing revenue up to $500 million annually as it could not eliminate illegal telecom exchange businesses.


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