MCMC Announces Spectrum Reallocation
01 Feb 2016
MCMC ANNOUNCES SPECTRUM REALLOCATION Cyberjaya, Monday, 1 Feb 2016: “Spectrum in the 900MHz and 1800MHz bands will be reallocated among four players by August this year,” said MCMC Chairman, Dato’ Sri Dr Halim Shafie. This is in line with the Government’s decision to optimise the use of spectrum resources through reallocation and bidding. According to Dr Halim, these two bands of spectrum will be assigned for a fee to Celcom, Digi, Maxis and U Mobile for a period of 15 years. The MCMC intends to issue the spectrum assignment to all four players by August 2016 for full implementation by 1 July 2017. He explained that the selection of these four players is because they already have sufficient infrastructure to expand on, to increase competition in the industry. “The reallocation takes into account the development of the sector and the nation as a whole. Specifically, a high priority has been put on communications coverage, quality of service and affordability of services,” said Dr Halim. “While we are going to charge a fee for the spectrum, we recognize that the players need to have sufficient capital to introduce and expand services.” The reallocation and conversion to spectrum assignment provide more certainty on the length of time these four players will have the right to use this spectrum. According to Dr Halim, the fee for the spectrum is currently being determined. Similar to the previous practice for the 3G spectrum, payments will be in phases, which will allow them to rollout services and not pass the cost to consumers. He also said that this reallocation exercise is to ensure that spectrum will be used in the most efficient manner. All four players will be operating in their new spectrum blocks by 1 July 2017. “MCMC will also address the optimal usage of other relevant spectrum bands such as the 700MHz, 2300MHz, 2600MHz bands, etc. by the end of 2016,” concluded Dr Halim.