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|September 21, 1998||
Reliance to provide satellite phone servicesReliance Industries has drawn up plans to enter the 'global mobile personal communications system', or the GMPCS services, market.
The capital investment in the project is estimated to be Rs 40 billion and a new company, Reliance Communications Private Limited, is being floated to set up the project.
GMPCS is a satellite-based mobile service that offers worldwide connectivity on a single number.
Reliance may pump in equity worth around Rs 12 billion. Investment from foreign institutional investors in the project may count up to 49 per cent. The company is likely to hold the remaining 51 per cent.
The specifications of the satellite systems and coverage are not yet known but the company is understood to be in talks with Intelsat and Inmarsat for the satellite segment.
The date of the service launch has also not yet been finalised.
Shyam Telecom will offer GMPCS service in India through a joint venture with a consortium of companies from Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines.
The service will be offered through ACeS India Private Limited in which the Shyam Telecom group will hold 51 per cent.
The remaining 49 per cent will be foreign equity, coming from the Indonesia-based PT Asia Cellular Satellite, a consortium of companies, including Philippines Long Distance Telecom Company and the Thailand-based Jasmine International Overseas.
The total equity in the project would be to the tune of Rs 600 million and the total project cost is expected to be around Rs 1.2 billion. An earth station would be located in India.
The foreign consortium's 'Garuda' satellite, scheduled for launch in early 1999, will provide satellite segment. Service from this geo-stationary satellite is expected to cover the Southeast Asian region and the Indian sub- continent.
The plans of Shyam Telecom and Reliance come in the wake of government permission for providing GMPCS services in the country.
The policy does not put any cap on the number of players though each project is subject to security clearances and availability of spectrum.
Both companies are slated to approach the government for clearances shortly.
- Compiled from the Indian media
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