As the Indian government prepares to present the Budget for the fiscal year 2024-25, the telecom industry is actively seeking policy changes that would reshape the industry’s trajectory. One of the primary demands put forth by industry stakeholders is the abandonment of the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF), which is currently levied on telecom operators to support rural connectivity and infrastructure development.
Industry leaders contend that the USOF imposes an additional financial burden on telecom companies, hindering their ability to invest in modern technologies and expand services. By urging the government to eliminate the USOF, the industry aims to redirect funds towards more pressing needs, such as the deployment of 5G networks, enhancing broadband penetration, and improving overall service quality.
Furthermore, the telecom sector is pushing for substantial reductions in duties to alleviate the financial strain on operators. Lowering duties, according to industry experts, would not only make telecom services more affordable for consumers but also stimulate increased investment in the sector. This, in turn, is expected to foster innovation, job creation, and propel India towards becoming a global telecommunications hub.
As the government weighs its options for the upcoming budget, the telecom industry’s plea for a policy overhaul is gaining traction. The outcome of these deliberations could shape the future landscape of telecommunications in India, influencing the accessibility, affordability, and technological advancements in the sector for years to come.