Inter-carrier interference (ICI) reduction techniques achieve a better carrier-to-interference ratio (CIR) in OFDM system in the presence of synchronisation errors. However, the frequency diversity available on the frequency-selective channel has not been utilised by conventional ICI reduction techniques. In this paper, the frequency diversity of ICI reduction methods in the presence of phase noise over frequency-selective fading channels is analysed. Based on the analysis, an ICI reduction technique is proposed, enhanced symmetric data-conjugate (ESDC) technique, to enhance the frequency diversity in multipath fading channel. The carrier-to-interference ratio (CIR) and common phase error (CPE) of the proposed ICI reduction scheme are derived and the BER performance of the proposed system is compared with the conventional ICI reduction methods such as adjacent data-conjugate (ADC) and symmetric data-conjugate (SDC) methods. Simulation results reveal that the proposed ICI reduction scheme provides an improvement in BER performance over a fading channel and it is also better than conventional ICI reduction techniques in the presence of ICI due to phase noise. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.