Trai recommends sweeping changes in telecom

Important recommendations made by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on Wednesday.

    Reduce VAT on mobile handsets, increase duty on imported handsets

    Service providers to declare their carbon footprint half yearly, cap placed on power consumption of mobile towers

    Operators should reduce Carbon emissions by 8% by 2012-2013, 12% by 2014-2015, and 25% by 2018-2019

    $4.5 billion USO Fund should only be used to set up trunk broadband lines in rural areas, not mobile networks (unless its a village with less than 500 population)

    30% of all equipment bought next year to be locally manufactured, 80% by 2019-20

    Set up Rs 10,000 crore Telecom Research and Development Fund (TRDF) with a corpus of Rs 10,000 crore for financing R&D projects

    Set up at least two chip manufacturing facilities with Gov funding upto 75% of the cost, provide tax exemption

    In the next five years, at least 50% of all rural towers and 33% of the urban towers are to be powered by hybrid power (Renewable + Grid) by 2015

    All mobile manufacturers and distributors to place collection bins for e-waste

    Dot should ask state governments not to interfere in telecom rollout or impose too many conditions and levies

    Towers in heritage areas to be camouflaged
    Allow small ISPs to offer IPTV

    Allow virtual mobile operators who buy in capacity in bulk from other operators and retail under their own brand