Since the 1980s, regulation has been a dominant mantra in economic reforms in developed countries. The Government of India (GoI) too, in the wake of reforms in the 1990s, zealously appointed regulators as an alternative to the direct control of industries—in telecommunications, banking, capital markets, insurance, hydrocarbons and electricity. But Indian regulatory authorities have by and large been ineffective.

In this pioneering study of India’s telecom sector, Ashok Desai—eminent economist, former advisor to the Government of India on economic reforms and columnist—examines the reasons why regulation does not work in India. In doing so, he:
- challenges the use of naïve indicators—like teledensity and the proportion of villages connected—to claim regulatory success;
- identifies systemic causes for the ineffectiveness of regulators in Indian conditions;
- argues that an independent regulator is incompatible with the government’s ownership of operators and retention of a powerful executive department; and
- proposes, among other solutions, the opening up of industry to local competition by delicensing last-mile operations.

More Details about India`s Telecommunications Industry: History, Analysis, Diagnosis

General Information  
Author(s)Ashok V Desai
PublisherSAGE Publications India Pvt Ltd
Publish YearMarch 2006