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Budget’09: Economic Survey: FDI In Telecom, DNC, USO Fund, BSNL Deal; e-Payment

In the Economic Survey 2008-09 released by the Indian government yesterday, they highlighted key initiatives made in the mobile and broadband sectors, including data related to foreign direct investment, USO fund utilization, etc. Targets for the end of the Eleventh Five Year Plan: -- 600 million mobile subscribers -- Rural tele-density of 25 per cent by means of 200 million rural connections -- Broadband for all secondary and higher secondary schools; all public health care centres and gram panchayats. -- 40 Million Internet and 20 million broadband subscribers by 2010. BSNL Wireline Broadband Deal According to the Economic Survey, 8,61,459 wireline* broadband connections with speed of at least 512 kbps always on, shall be provided by BSNL with subsidy support from the USO Fund. An agreement was signed in January 2009 with BSNL to provide these connections to rural and remote areas by leveraging the existing 27,789 rural exchanges and copper wireline network and by facilitating the service providers in creating broadband infrastructure. The rural broadband connectivity will cover Government, institutional users, gram panchayats, higher secondary schools, public health centres and individual users. Subsidy would also be provided for setting up one kiosk from each rural exchange for providing public access to broadband services. * Note: At one point in the Economic Survey, a reference is made to 8, 61, 459 wire-less services, while at another, a reference is made to 8, 61, 459 wire-line services. We'll try and find a copy of the contract and update. Growth In Telecom According to the Economic…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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