RomTelecom fined for failing to fulfil 400MHz spectrum obligations

5 Jul 2012

Romanian telecoms watchdog ANCOM has fined RomTelecom RON200,000 (USD56,253) for not fulfilling the coverage obligations stipulated in its licence to use frequencies in the 410MHz-415MHz and 420MHz-425MHz spectrum bands. Following the distribution of the frequencies in June 2008, the telco was obliged to achieve mobile broadband coverage of 55% of the country by the end of 2013, including at least 100 towns with fewer than 50,000 inhabitants. As per the terms of the concession, RomTelecom was expected to deploy a total of 1,242 base stations, but ANCOM discovered that only 788 have been installed to date. It is unclear why the regulator has intervened 18 months before the initial end-2013 deadline. The ten-year licence is valid until 23 September 2018.

Whilst the technology being utilised by RomTelecom has not been disclosed, it is presumed that the frequencies are used to support the company’s fixed-wireless CDMA network, which launched in April 2009. Although the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) defines its ‘preferred CDMA450 frequency bands’ as falling between 452.5MHz and 467.5MHz, spectrum sub-classes can extend as far as 411MHz and 493.5MHz.