Telecom infra providers see revenue potential of Rs21,500 Cr-Rs31,000 Cr over 3 yrs

The report added that between 2007-2020, the number of towers have grown over two folds at an annual growth rate of 7.1% to reach 606,300.

New Delhi: Telecom tower penetration in India in the last decade has reached 83%, second only to China’s 100%, and exhibits revenue potential for infrastructure providers to the tune of Rs 21,500 crore- Rs 31,000 crore in next three years, a latest study revealed.

To tap on this potential, it would require an investment of Rs 66,000 crore-Rs 93,000 crore in the five year timeframe up to 2023, according to a joint report by consulting firm EY and India’s tower body TAIPA,.

The report added that between 2007-2020, the number of towers have grown over two folds at an annual growth rate of 7.1% to reach 606,300.


Akhil Gupta, Chairman TAIPA & Bharti Infratel, advocated to extend the scope of network infrastructure sharing beyond passive elements to active elements which include core infrastructure such as spectrum (intra-band), antenna and base stations.

“I feel going forward the industry must also explore the possibility of creating netcos whereby the operators can share the capacities created and take advantage of the large scale network that can be put up,” Gupta said at a virtual event marking 10 years of formation of the Tower and Infrastructure Providers Association (TAIPA).

RS Sharma, Chairman, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), also said that the Cabinet approved National Digital Communications Policy (NDCP) states that the scope of IP-1 infrastructure providers must be enhanced to facilitate the creation of a common shareable active infrastructure.
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As per the report, passive elements sharing have brought cost synergies of 35%-40% towards capital and operating expenditures for operators, whereas, active sharing (including spectrum) can save upto 63%-78%.

The Delhi-based group represents infrastructure providers (IP-1) companies such as Bharti Infratel, American Tower Corporation, Indus Towers and Tower Vision.

“Fibre connectivity exhibits potential as the deployment curve is expected to increase 1.9x and touch 2.8 million cable kilometers in 2023. Small cells is another exciting opportunity, with outdoor small deployment slated to reach 250,000 by 2023,” the report said.

EY forecasts that 68.4% of telecom towers in India will be fiberised by 2023 as against 42.6% this year.
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