Bids for one set of nationwide third-generation (3G) mobile spectrum licences in India reached 140.26 billion rupees ($3.1 billion) on the 27th day of an auction, a spokesman for the Department of Telecommunications said on Tuesday. Bidding for the spectrum, which would allow firms to offer high-speed Internet and other premium services such as video calling on mobile phone, started on April 9 and is expected to wind up in coming days.

The base price for one set of pan-India licences was set at 35 billion rupees. The government will sell four such licences — three from the auction and one set to state-run telecoms firms which would have to match the highest bid price paid by the private operators. Nine mobile operators, including Bharti Airtel, Reliance Communications and Vodafone's Indian unit, are participating in the auction.

Last week, the bids had reached Rs. 107.49 bln.

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