Govt Sets Base Price for Additional Spectrum Auction

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Govt Sets Base Price for Additional Spectrum Auction

The government has established a base price in the 1,800 MHz and 2,100 MHz bands for the $31 and $29 million spectral auction, which is expected to take place in June 2021, according to Propakistani.

Well-placed sources indicated that a policy guideline for Pakistan Telecoms Authority (PTA), to carry out a spectra auction in June 2021, is expected to be issued by the Minister of Information Technology and Telecoms next week.

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As spectrum auction consultant for 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz bands, PTA had engaged an international company – Frontier Economics Ltd. The company submitted its report, chaired by finance minister Shaukat Tarin, to the Advisory Committee on Next Generation Mobile Services (NGMS) on the 29th of April 2021.

Sources have indicated that $30 million and $27.5 million had been recommended as the base price to the Consultative Committee on 1 800 MHz and 2 100 MHz bands.

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PTA proposed a basic price of 31 million dollars and 29 million for 1,800 MHz and 2,100 MHz, respectively, in its proposals to the advisory committee. Sources that attended the meeting of the committee said they decided, while taking into account market demand, revenue generation and quality improvement, to set the basic price of $31 million and $29 million in 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz bands, respectively.

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In September 2020 an advisory board to publish the Next Generation Mobile Services spectrum for the improvement of mobile broadband services in the country was constituted by the Economic Coordination Committee(ECC).

The Finance Division then stated, according to a statement issued, that the Committee’s Terms of Reference (ToRs) would be:

  • The market evaluation report and PTA recommendations on the release of maximum NGMS spectrum in Pakistan should be examined and assessed;
  • Review and finalize policy directives on NGMS released by the federal government.
  • To oversee the PTA release process
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A PTA official stated that in view of international best practises for the telecoms market, the consultancy’s goal was a strategy to renew and add an extra spectrum in 1800 and 2100 MHz bands.

The consulting firm also aimed at renewal and auction spectrum pricing benchmarks with future projection aimed at achieving overall economic growth and encouraging foreign investment, taking into account the impacts of previous benchmarks and other relevant factors.

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A spectrum re-adjustment/rationalization plan was also intended to maximise the effective use of spectrum in accordance with the best international practise of the assigned spectrum.

The objective was to allocate spectrum so that block sizes of adjoining frequencies could be restored to standard block sizes by refarming existing assignments. However, the final decision on the advisor’s recommendations is the prerogative of the government.

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