India regulator recommends cut in mobile spectrum auction floor price

NEW DELHI, Sept 9 Mon Sep 9, 2013 5:06am EDT

NEW DELHI, Sept 9 (Reuters) - India's telecommunications regulator recommended a sharp cut in the floor price of mobile phone airwaves for an upcoming auction, a boon to carriers such as Bharti Airtel Ltd and Vodafone Group Plc's local unit.

The regulator recommended on Monday a pan-India reserve price of 14.96 billion rupees per MHz in the 1800 band. In the 900 MHz band, it recommended a reserve price of 2.88 billion rupees per MHz for Delhi, 2.62 billion rupees for Mumbai and 1 billion for Kolkata.

The government is under pressure to lower auction reserve prices of mobile phone airwaves in different frequency bands after most carriers stayed away from bidding in the last two auctions, saying the prices were high. (Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy)