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International Trade Bodies urge Indian government to adopt 3GPP 5G standard

Some months ago, Phone companies seek the telecom department’s intervention to stop the adoption of an India-specific 5G standard backed by a local telecom standards agency, warn that such a move could jack up 5G rollout costs by almost 30-40% and make 5G phones exorbitant and can spoil the business case for 5G services in India.

Telcos urge the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) that India should align with the rest of the world and adopts the global 5G network standard already approved by the International Telecom Union (ITU) to leverage global 5G ecosystem benefits to ensure cost-effective rollouts and availability of 5G devices at affordable rates.

Now, Top International Trade bodies from the US and UK have told the Indian government that the adoption of a globally harmonized standard, the 3GPP 5G standard, will give a much-needed push to electronic manufacturing in India as companies will be encouraged to set up their operations in India.

These organizations include the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI), Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), UK India Business Council (UKIBC), U.S. Chamber of Commerce US-India Business Council (USIBC), US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), TechNet and TechUK.

As per an ET Telecom report, International Trade Bodies said in a joint submission letter to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and the Telecommunications Engineering Centre (TEC) that “By using globally harmonized standards such as those from 3GPP, companies can set up manufacturing operations in India with the confidence that they can easily serve both the Indian market and export to global markets,”

The International trade bodies said that India, the United States, Japan, and Australia would have to work together on the Quad Emerging Technology Working Group. For the unaware, Quad is an informal grouping of nations on a diplomatic level including the four countries of India, the United States, Japan, and Australia. The trade bodies further added that if 5Gi is adapted as a mandatory standard then it would discourage India from becoming an ICT manufacturing hub.

“By using 3GPP standards, India’s telecommunications operators will be able to leverage the economies of scale provided by globally harmonized standards to efficiently iterate on existing networks,” they added.

However, with the help of a global 3GPP 5G standard, the economies of scale could be leveraged to manufacture ICT equipment for a rapid and cost-effective rural network which is India’s urgent need. Not only that but the ICT manufacturing would be used to serve both the local and global markets. Reliance Jio and other telecom companies have also remarked that the use of 5Gi should be used in a non-mandatory manner.

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Astitva Patle
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