As Elon Musk Plans India Trip, DOT Fast-Tracks Starlink Licence Application: Report

Ahead of Elon Musk’s India visit, the SpaceX founder’s StarLink service is on the verge of securing a license to operate in India, with the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) expediting the process.

What Happened: The DoT is reportedly fast-tracking the licensing process for StarLink, Musk’s satellite internet venture, ahead of the CEO’s visit to India later this month, reported Moneycontrol.

The department is expected to issue a letter of intent and trial spectrum for StarLink’s satellite communication services in the coming days.

A senior government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, revealed that the DoT is in the final stages of due diligence and is holding inter-ministerial discussions due to security concerns.

StarLink, a subsidiary of Musk’s SpaceX, is known for providing high-speed internet connectivity via satellites. The company is currently in the process of obtaining a global mobile personal communication by satellite services (GMPCS) license, which is the first step towards launching a satellite internet service in India.

StarLink is also seeking approvals from the home ministry, law enforcement, and other security agencies, as the Indian government has raised security concerns.

See Also: Inside India's Second Richest Mans Massive Green Bet Gautam Adanis Agel To Invest 1 5 Lakh Cr

Why It Matters: Musk’s visit to India comes at a time when his other company, Tesla Inc., is also making significant strides in the country.

Musk is expected to meet with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and is likely to announce investment and manufacturing plans in India.

StarLink’s entry into the Indian market has been a topic of discussion for some time. The company’s licensing process was previously reported to be facing delays due to complications similar to those encountered by Verizon Communications in a previous case.

Meanwhile, Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Jio is also making significant progress in its satellite communication venture, awaiting crucial authorizations from IN-SPACe, the Indian space industry regulator.

With the Indian market showing significant growth prospects, companies like StarLink, Jio Satellite Communications, Bharti Airtel's OneWeb, and Amazon are vying for a share.

Moreover, Tesla’s plans to establish a presence in India have gained momentum with the Indian government reportedly finalizing a policy that would offer the company reduced import duties for electric cars.

Read Next: Mercedes-Benz Not Threatened By Tesla’s India Entry: ‘Our EV Charging Bays Will Be Open’ Says Exec

Disclaimer: This content was partially produced with the help of Benzinga Neuro and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.

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