BOGOTA May 9 Colombia received offers from six
companies interested in taking part in a tender for 4G
telecommunication airwaves for which the winners will have to
pay at least $250 million in total, the government said on
Minister for Information Technology and Communications Diego
Molano said he has received offers from Claro, a unit of
Mexico's America Movil, and from a consortium formed
by Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Bogota and Tigo, which is
controlled by Millicom.
Offers also came from Colombia Telecomunicaciones,
controlled by Spain's Telefonica and the Colombian
government; Avantel ; DirecTV and a consortium
of companies led by Mexico's Azteca 4G, Molano said.
The ministry will evaluate the offers for compliance with
the requirements before announcing a shortlist on June 26.
Winners will have to pay the government at least $250
million for the right to launch 4G networks, and they will have
to donate 500,000 tablets for the education sector. They will
also have to provide 4G services for the army.
"The government is pleased that a good number of companies
are interested in taking part because that means that we put the
right rules for the tender," Molano told journalists.
The government says the companies that win the tender will
launch networks that will cover the totality of Colombia, a
fast-growing Andean nation with a population of 46 million.
Next-generation 4G services deliver speeds more than five
times faster than 3G services, enabling smartphone and tablet
users to make video calls and consume more and more content.