Israel’s MoC announces UMTS tender details

22 Sep 2010

Israel’s Ministry of Communication (MoC) has launched a tender for two new UMTS concessions as part of its efforts to increase competition in the country’s wireless sector. According to Reuters, existing mobile operators have been barred from participating in the process, although it has made an exception for local iDEN operator MIRS Communications, which will be allowed to take part; should MIRS bag one of the two concessions up for grabs the scope of its existing licence would be expanded. Further conditions of the sale process include that those companies, or their controlling shareholders, must have capital of at least ILS200 million (USD54 million) as well as an annual revenue of at least ILS300 million between 2007 and 2009. The minimum bid price has been set at ILS10 million, and the successful bidders will be required to expand their networks nationwide within seven years of the licence award. Those parties interested in the licence must submit their proposals before 1 February 2011, with communications minister Moshe Kahlon noting: ‘The entry of new cellular phone operators in the market will create competition at the level of service and rates which will help customers, especially private customers.’