Conatel launches 700MHz auction process; new operators welcome

4 Aug 2017

Paraguay’s National Telecommunications Council (Consejo Nacional de Telecomunicaciones, Conatel) has unveiled formal plans to introduce 700MHz spectrum via a tender later this year. In the first instance, the watchdog is inviting comments and suggestions from interested parties until 16 August, with a view to staging a ‘simultaneous upward auction’ before end-2017. Teresita Palacios, president of Conatel, noted that winning bidders will be expected to extend services to underserved rural areas, adding: ‘We also open a window for those who want to invest in our country or enter as a new operator.’ Palacios expects the auction to generate around USD100 million for state coffers.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Conatel’s last spectrum auction took place in December 2015. Tigo and Claro were formally awarded 1700MHz/2100MHz 4G licences, with each company paying USD45 million for a 2×15MHz block of spectrum.