The Georgian National Communications Commission (GNCC) has confirmed that it has sold a 4G spectrum licence to Mobitel (Beeline) for around GEL50.782 million (USD26.9 million). The Vimpelcom-backed cellco has secured 2×10MHz blocks in the 800MHz band, after agreeing to pay the licence fee of GEL48.364 million and a GEL2.418 million bidding fee. Under the terms of the concession, Mobitel is required to provide 4G coverage to 30% of settlements with a population of less than 5,000 by 1 February 2016, with this condition rising to 50% by 1 February 2017, 70% twelve months after that and finally 90% of all settlements with less than 5,000 inhabitants by 1 February 2020.
The regulator also noted that it has begun to modify radio frequency spectrum licences that have already been issued and/or are temporarily owned by operators, in order to allow for the provision of 4G services. This includes the permits owned by Magticom, Geocell and Mobitel for the usage of harmonised radio frequency ranges (800MHz/900MHz/1800MHz/2100MHz). The duration for the modified technology and service neutral licences is 15 years.