Reliance Jio to use BSNL towers

Dylan Bushell-Embling
27 Aug 2014

Indian 4G hopeful Reliance Jio Infocomm has signed yet another infrastructure sharing agreement, this time with state-owned operator BSNL.

Reliance Jio has inked a deal to allow it to eventually lease around 4,000 mobile towers from BSNL at a base rate of 38,000 rupees ($628) per month for ground-based towers, the Economic Timesreported.

The contract stipulates discounted rates for rooftop towers and a further discount if Reliance Jio commits to lease at least 1,500 towers in the first year.

Reliance Jio has so far lined up major infrastructure sharing agreements with companies including Reliance Communications, Bharti Airtel and its tower arm Bharti Infratel and tower company ATC.

The operator is the first in India to hold a unified license allowing it to offer services in all 22 telecom circles, and is rolling out a TD-LTE network across the nation. Reliance Jio plans to offer voice as well as data services.

As for BSNL, the deal is a step in the right direction for the government's turnaround plans for the company, which might involve spinning off its tower assets into a separate entity.

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