Jazz and Telenor Pakistan each paid the government half of a controversial mobile licence renewal fee, as part of goodwill payment of close to $450 million to avoid service disruption.

The operators, which are suing the government for increasing the renewal fee to $450 million, offered to pay under protest two weeks ago after the high court requested they make “token payments” to indicate they are serious about reaching a solution with the government, The Express Tribune reported.

In a statement, the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) said both operators deposited $224.6 million apiece, partial payments which bring them into compliance with an order from the Islamabad High Court.

The PTA claims the renewal fee is in line with the price of spectrum sold in the most recent auctions and threatened to suspend the licences if the companies failed to make the payments by 21 August.