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Cabinet clears FM auctions

The Union Cabinet cleared on Friday the third phase of auction of FM radio channels, expected to fetch Rs. 550 crore to the government.

A Cabinet meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the auction, while also clearing migration [renewal] of 135 private FM radio licences from the second to the third phase in 69 cities.

Several more private channels will hence start operations in those cities.

By the recommendations of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, migration requires payment of a fee.

As many as 243 private FM channels operate in 86 cities in 26 States and three Union Territories.

“The auction process will add an estimated revenue of over Rs. 550 crore to the national exchequer on successful auctions of all proposed channels. Besides, it will beget the amount realised through the migration process which is dependent on the TRAI-recommended formula, where migration fee is linked to the discovery of market prices through the FM Radio Phase III auction,” the Cabinet statement said.

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