Public sector telecom giant Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited will invest Rs 15,000 crore (Rs 150 billion) this fiscal to upgrade its infrastructure and roll out new value-added services.
"Our capital expenditure in different verticals this year would be around Rs 15,000 crore," BSNL CMD Kuldeep Goyal told Business Standard.
BSNL will use the investment for mobile expansion and for services like 3G, broadband, wireless broadband, IPTV, WiMAX, mobile commerce (m-commerce), value-added landline, Enterprise Resource Planning and others.
"Our aim is to add 35 million telephone lines by the end of this fiscal across the country and to commission fresh 3G network," he added.
BSNL had launched 3G services on February 2 and, at present, it is available in 70 towns. "We plan to provide 3G services in 700 cities by the end of calendar 2009," Goyal said.
He added that, for achieving the targeted mobile growth, more spectrum was needed by operators.
"The availability of spectrum for mobile phone operators in general is less than other countries. However, this has not affected the quality of services being offered," he claimed.
"We will offer wireless broadband through WiMAX technology in 1,000 blocks of the country out of the total 6,000 blocks. The state-run telecom operator will roll out franchisee-based WiMAX service in the country, starting with Gujarat, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh.
"We have floated tenders for offering similar a WiMAX service in other states as well," he said. "We are also working on improving our quality of service and have engaged AC Nielson to test the quality of our mobile service," Goyal added.