3G, 4G auction | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation

3G, 4G auction

Pakistan Press Foundation

THIS refers to the news item ‘Four mobile operators qualify for 3G, 4G auction’ (April 17). Why is there no bidder for the expired licence of Instaphone?

Telecommunication companies do not want to invest a single penny in Pakistan from their overseas wealth; that too earned from Pakistan. Why was the procedure of auction designed in a manner which facilitated the alleged pooling? Has any action been taken against the consultants hired on hefty amounts?

What were the reciprocal benefits bargained with the telecommunication companies in accepting their demand for allowing the payments in Pakistani rupee (after it was notified in the information memorandum the auction payments will be in US dollars), which effectively confirmed that no foreign investment will be coming to Pakistan?

Why were no serious efforts made to invite new foreign telecommunication companies? Why did no new telecommunication company come when current companies are doing such a roaring business that they are sending about $2bn per annum profit out of Pakistan?

Why isn’t the FBR pressing for its many years’ old claim of more than Rs50bn usurped by these companies on account of payables to the government collected from the public on the government’s behalf?

When the world is crying foul in the 3G/4G bids by the four telecommunication companies, why does the government say the auction will fetch a satisfactory amount of $1.3bn when even these payments will be received in Pakistan rupee? Why isn’t the public being told that only Rs65bn would be received and the remaining 50pc would be received in easy instalments in five years?

Why did the government relax the rules to allow the participation in the telecommunication spectrum auction of a defaulting company? Why hasn’t $850m due from a defaulting company since 2006 been recovered for the equal of more than 95pc to 97pc properties already transferred in the defaulting company’s name?

S. Nayyaruddin Ahmad