Montenegrin cellcos awarded digital dividend, multi-band spectrum

5 Aug 2016

Montenegro’s Agency for Electronic Communications & Post (EKIP) has completed its multi-band mobile spectrum licence auction in the 800MHz (digital dividend), 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2GHz and 2.6GHz ranges, awarding frequencies to all three existing cellcos Telenor Montenegro, Crnogorski Telekom and Mtel (m:tel) and raising a total of EUR50.65 million (USD56.42 million). Crnogorski Telekom and Mtel both won 4G LTE-suitable 800MHz spectrum (made available via the analogue-to-digital TV migration), whilst additional 2.6GHz licence awards are earmarked for further developing their LTE networks. In addition, Crnogorski Telekom and Telenor Montenegro obtained new 15-year concessions for spectrum in the 900MHz/1800MHz/2GHz bands. Unsold spectrum was valued at EUR8.31 million.

Crnogorski Telekom’s 800MHz licence carries specific conditions of broadband coverage in rural and sparsely populated areas, whilst its 4G network must cover: 70% of the population by the end of the first year of licence validity; 85% in the second year; and 95% in year three. Additionally, in each of the first three years of the licence term, the cellco must deploy at least five new 800MHz base stations in rural areas which are unserved by other broadband services, with guaranteed outdoor mobile data speeds of 2Mbps/1Mbps (down/uplink).