The interim government of Fiji has confirmed it is looking to auction off radio spectrum in the 700MHz, 800MHz and 1800MHz bands for the provision of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) services, setting a deadline of mid-June 2013 for companies wishing to submit bids. Island Business news reports that the state intends to sell 21 lots of 5MHz of spectrum, and last month published an advertisement to stimulate interest in the auction, saying: ‘Through this advertisement, the Department of Communication is seeking registration from interested parties including non-telecommunication companies, who wish to take part in the auction’. No single party will be allowed to take more than 30MHz of spectrum across the three bands on offer, when the process is concluded between 24 June and 28 June, it added.
Minister for Communications and attorney-general Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum is quoted as saying that not only will 4G give Fijians access to ultra-high speed internet access, but it ‘will promote competition, attract foreign investors and eliminate the kind of corruption that is seen the world over when it comes to spectrum allocation. In Fiji, past governments allocated frequencies on the spectrum with no rationale, planning or vision for the future’. Fiji is targeting internet coverage of 100% of the population in the near future.