Telecom stocks fall on airwave surcharge woes

Last Updated: Tue, Oct 09, 2012 19:45 hrs

Telecom stocks fell on Tuesday after an Empowered Group of Ministers recommended a one-time fee on existing operators for spectrum they hold beyond 4.4 MHz.

Idea Cellular lost 3.24 per cent at Rs 82.05, Bharti Airtel declined 1.83 per cent to Rs 265.20 and Reliance Communications fell 2.38 per cent to Rs 61.60.

Operators wishing not to pay the additional fee would be allowed to relinquish the excess spectrum beyond 4.4 MHz. The one-time fee would be imposed from the day the Cabinet takes a decision on the matter.


BSE Price in Rs

% chg

Oct 8, 2012 Oct 9, 2012
Idea Cellular 84.80 82.05 -3.24
Reliance Comm 63.10 61.60 -2.38
TTML 12.18 11.90 -2.30
Bharti Airtel 270.14 265.20 -1.83
Data compiled by BS Research Bureau

“The move will negatively impact incumbent players that are not hit by a Supreme Court order to revoke permits in a scandal-tainted 2008 sale and are not required to bid in the auction,” Angel Broking said in a report.

Operators face a total surcharge of at least $5.2 billion to continue using the airwaves.

Telecom stocks had risen on Monday after news that the surcharge to be levied would not be backdated as some had feared. Citigroup analysts estimate Bharti could face a payout of Rs 3,800 crore. BNP Paribas estimates Bharti would have to pay Rs 4,876 crore.

Idea Cellular, the country's third-biggest operator by revenue, may have to pay Rs 1,800 crore (Rs 6 a share), Citigroup estimates. BNP Paribas estimates Idea's payout to be Rs 2,277 crore.

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