Make this your homepage
Business News
Home > Business News
5G infra to cost Rs 3 lakh cr in next 4-5 yrs amid elevated debt levels: ICRA
5G infra to cost Rs 3 lakh cr in next 4-5 yrs amid elevated debt levels: ICRA

New Delhi, Jan 30 : India currently has around 35 per cent of its towers fiberised for 5G and the backhaul infrastructure will cost a whopping Rs 3 lakh crore over the next 4-5 years, rating agency ICRA said on Monday.

The full-scale 5G deployment across the country will entail densification of the network and, thereby, sizable investments in fiberisation.

However, the debt levels for the industry continue to remain high and the same further increased post the conclusion of the last round of auctions.

The industry is expected to close the year with a debt of around Rs 6.3 lakh crore (as on March 31, 2023).

"While the rollouts have started and customers are being upgraded to the 5G network, the same is being done at no additional costs as 5G-specific plans have not been launched yet. Moreover, 5G deployment will entail densification of network and close placement of radio antennas, with possible collocation on street furniture," said Ankit Jain, VP and Sector Head, Corporate Ratings, ICRA.

While small cells are likely to be the first option to start with, these need to be connected with fibre for efficient network coverage and delivery.

"As several use cases are under development, it will take some time for 5G to reach an adequate level of penetration. To begin with, it will be more focused towards enterprise-based use cases. Thus, unlike 4G, ICRA expects the 5G rollout to be more phased out and pockets specific," Jain elaborated.

The telecom industry has continued to report healthy improvement in its operating metrics as reflected by improvement in ARPU (average revenue per user) levels and consistent growth in telephony usage.

Add your Comment
Comments (0)

Special Articles

Sanjay Majumder Sanjay Majumder
Anirban Mitra Anirban Mitra