Reliance Jio has said that it has paid Rs 30,791 to the Department of Telecom, clearing all its dues for the spectrum purchased in all the auctions before 2021. This includes the telecom spectrum acquired between 2014-2016 and the spectrum acquired in 2021 through trading a right-to-use with Bharti Airtel. The company had acquired the 585.3 MHz spectrum in the said auctions via trading, dues for which had already been cleared. Also Read - Jio, Airtel, Vi likely to hike tariff by Diwali 2022: Report
Reliance Jio said that the liabilities for acquiring spectrum via various auctions were due for payment via annual instalments from financial year 2022-23 to 2034-2035 and carried interest rate between 9.30% to 10% per annum with an average residual period of over seven years. However, the prepayment of the spectrum dues will help the company “save around Rs 1,200 crore annually, at the current interest rates.” Also Read - Reliance Jio launches Rs 333, Rs 583, Rs 783 prepaid plans with 3 months Disney+ Hotstar subscription
“Subsequent to Department of Telecom’s decision in the month of December 2021 providing the telcos the flexibility to prepay their deferred spectrum liabilities on any date, RJIL has now prepaid in the month of January 2022, the entire deferred liabilities acquired in auction in the year 2014 and 2015 as well as spectrum acquired through trading,” the company said. Also Read - Reliance Jio announces new JioFiber postpaid plans in India: Check details
It is worth noting that while Jio has cleared all its dues pertaining to spectrum acquisition prior to 2021, the dues for spectrum acquired through 2021 remain to be paid. The company still has to pay dues for the acquired spectrum in the 800 MHz, 1800 MHz, and 2300 MHz bands, the total value for which stands at Rs 57,123 crore.
At the time, the company had made an upfront payment of Rs 19,939 crore. However, it still has to pay the remaining sum of Rs 37,184 crore. As per the terms of last year’s auction, the deferred payments for the acquired auctions have to be made over 18 years at an interest rate of 7.3% per annum.
Bharti Airtel, on the other hand, also made a payment of Rs 15,519 to the DoT in December last year. At the time, the company said that it would help the company save Rs 3,400 crore annually.