Nkom publishes final 900MHz auction rules, opens registration

21 Mar 2017

Norwegian telecoms regulator the National Communications Authority (Nkom) has published the final auction rules for its upcoming sale of 900MHz spectrum, while at the same time announcing it has formally opened registration for interested parties. In a press release the watchdog confirmed that it has set a deadline of 20 April for applications, with the auction itself set to get underway on 23 May 2017.

With regards to the auction guidelines, the Nkom said that, having conducted a consultation on its draft rules, it has prepared a summary document in which it comments on the suggestions made. Changes to the auction rules and conclusions on the feedback are presented in this document, but the regulator made special mention of certain changes in its press release. Specifically, it confirmed that the rules on bank guarantee size have been altered; having initially proposed that guarantees should be NOK420 million (USD49.6 million), this has now been cut to NOK140 million per block of spectrum. According to the Nkom, this change should ensure that bank guarantees will not be unreasonably high for those companies bidding for just one or two blocks of spectrum. Meanwhile, the Nkom has also confirmed that if a company already holding 900MHz spectrum should lose their existing allocation it will benefit from a transitional period, with it having until 1 July 2019 to discontinue use of the spectrum in question.

As previously reported by CommsUpdate, earlier this month the Nkom confirmed that 2×20MHz (four blocks of 2×5MHz) will be up for grabs in the upcoming auction; the existing 900MHz band frequency licences held by Telia Norway and Telenor are due to expire on 31 December 2017. The minimum price per 2×5MHz block has been set at NOK140 million, while a frequency cap of 2×15MHz will be imposed.