Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio Infocomm on Tuesday announced a comprehensive arrangement under which they will share their telecom infrastructure, a move that will help the two companies reduce cost at a time when the industry is reeling under intense pressure.
The arrangement will include the optic fibre network — inter and intra city, submarine cable networks, towers and Internet broadband services, the companies said in a joint statement.
“The arrangement could, in future, be extended to roaming on 2G, 3G and 4G, and any other mutually benefiting areas relating to telecommunication, including, but not limited to, jointly laying optic fibre or other forms of infrastructure services,” it said. “The pricing would be at ‘arm’s length,’ based on the prevailing market rates.”
While the Sunil Mittal-headed Bharti Airtel is the largest telecom operator in the country, Reliance Jio Infocomm, a subsidiary of the Mukesh Ambani-led RIL, is the only operator with pan-India Broadband Wireless Access spectrum.
Airtel and Reliance Jio said the cooperation was aimed at avoiding duplication of infrastructure and preserving capital and the environment. It would also provide redundancy to ensure seamless services to their customers.