Auction of Spectrum for wireless local loop

  • Paul Swain
Communications and Information Technology

Communications Minister Paul Swain today announced the government's decision to auction spectrum rights suitable for a range of telecommunications services in mid-2002.

"This latest auction of radio spectrum will increase the amount of spectrum available to telecommunications providers, and will enhance their ability to provide better services to their customers." Paul Swain said.

The spectrum to be auctioned is:

·Nine blocks of spectrum at 3.4 - 3.6 GHz, which is suitable for radio based local loop telephony and internet connections, generically referred to as wireless local loop (WLL);

·Five blocks of spectrum at 24.5 - 26.4 GHz, which is suitable for short distance, high bandwidth telephony data and video distribution services typically in dense urban areas, generically referred to as local multi-point distribution services (LMDS);

·Spectrum around 900 MHz, which is suitable for either European or US technology cellular services, similar to those currently operated by Vodafone and Telecom;

·A single lot of 2 GHz spectrum that was not sold in the previous auction.

“The WLL lots to be auctioned will be subject to acquisition limits preventing any one party from acquiring more than three lots.

“The government has also decided to set aside two additional WLL lots to allow licensing, on defined terms, in particular areas. This government is committed to regional development, and in particular aims to ensure that all New Zealand communities are able to access two-way high speed internet services by the end of 2003. Reserving a small portion of the WLL spectrum will allow the government to meet any demand not satisfied by commercial operators.

“Details of the auction rules, the lots that will be for sale, and the commencement date for bidding will be announced early in the new year. The auction rules will include refinements resulting from the recent review of the 2GHz auction.

“The government intends to conduct the auction in mid-2002, after interested parties have had a reasonable time to prepare for the auction,” Paul Swain said