According to unconfirmed local media reports, the Nicaraguan government’s ongoing tender for a pair of mobile licences in the 1785MHz-1805MHz band has been suspended by regulator Instituto Nicaraguense de Telecomunicaciones y Correos (Telcor) with immediate effect. No reason has been given for the decision.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in September 2012 Telcor launched a tender for two new mobile licences in the 1800MHz band, with a view to breaking up the long-standing Claro/Movistar duopoly. Both concessions will allow the introduction of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology and be geared towards operators which are prepared to concentrate on the deployment of rural-focused services.
Beijing-based research and development firm Xinwei Telecom Enterprise Group – one of seven companies to have acquired bidding documents – was considered to be the front-runner for one of the two concessions, after Costa Rica’s state-owned power and telecoms company Grupo Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (Grupo ICE), which offers mobile services in its domestic market under the ‘ICE Celular’ brand, confirmed in November that it was no longer interested in participating in the tender.