A public consultation on arrangements for the reassignment of the 90 MHz of spectrum in the 2.5/2.6 GHz band for the provision of public mobile services as well as the associated spectrum utilisation fee was launched today.
The Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development and the Communications Authority jointly launched the consultation to seek views by October 20.
A 90 MHz of spectrum in the 2.5/2.6 GHz band is currently assigned to three mobile network operators for the provision of fourth generation mobile (4G) services and they will expire in March 2024.
Apart from the good radio propagation characteristics of the 2.5/2.6 GHz band in providing wide area coverage and its wide bandwidth in supporting high transmission capacity, the band can also be re-farmed to meet future demand for fifth generation mobile (5G) services.
As there will likely be competing demands for the spectrum, the authority proposed to reassign it through auction.
Prospective spectrum assignees may deploy the acquired spectrum in a technology neutral manner, including for the provision of 4G and 5G services, it added.
As for the related spectrum utilisation fee, similar to other spectrums assigned for public mobile services where there are competing demands, it should reflect the full market value.
The fee will be determined through auction with the reserve prices to be set by the Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development.
The bureau said auctioning the spectrum will ensure that such a scarce public resource can be place into the hands of those who value it most and will consequently put it to the most efficient use for the benefit of the public.
After taking into account the views and comments received, the bureau and the authority aim to make their decisions in the first quarter of 2021.
Click here for the consultation paper.