The Malta Communications Authority (MCA) has confirmed that the country’s three incumbent cellcos – Vodafone Malta, GO and Melita – have submitted applications to acquire additional wireless spectrum in the 800MHz, 1800MHz and 2.5GHz bands. Start-up firm mob5G.net Malta, which had been rumoured to be interested in bidding, was not named among the applicants.
800MHz spectrum was scheduled to be allocated last year, but the assignment process was postponed when Vodafone and Melita unveiled plans for a merger; their tie-up has since been called off due to competition concerns. The MCA will now assess the eligibility of the applications and expects to proceed to the qualification phase by June 2018. It says the allocation of additional spectrum should eventually lead to ‘lower prices, greater innovation, new investment and better coverage’.