Czechs begin process of redrafting 4G auction rules

14 Mar 2013

The Czech Telecommunication Office (CTU) has begun the process of redrafting the rules for the country’s auction of 4G-suitable mobile frequencies, noting that bidders who dipped out in the aborted first tender will be given the opportunity to appeal the 8 March cancellation. Bloomberg quotes CTU spokesman Frantisek Malina as saying that with the new draft underway, the watchdog hopes ‘to announce a new sale in months’. The regulator’s office has so far declined to provide details on the proposed new tender, saying it will wait until the 15-day period to appeal lapses before making any statements in this area. The four firms affected by the cancellation are Telefonica O2 CR, T-Mobile CR, Vodafone CR and would-be newcomer PPF Mobile Services. While the three incumbents have remained tight-lipped on whether they intend to appeal, PPF Mobile Services has confirmed it will not be launching a legal challenge.

As reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, the CTU cancelled its auction of Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile frequencies after bids rose beyond the USD1 billion mark, prompting concerns over the competitive pricing of new services and the speed at which operators would be able to launch them. ‘Such excessive prices of the auctioned frequencies would have to negatively translate into excessive charges for fast mobile internet,’ CTU chairman Pavel Dvorak confirmed in a written statement. ‘We therefore consider it necessary to step in and prevent future negative consequences for the customers.’