Belgium’s planned 5G auction will no longer take place this year, Telecom Minister Philippe De Backer told De Tijd last week. The Belgian government had previously said last year that a 5G auction would take place in 2019, however, De Backer stated that it will not happen until 2020 at the earliest. The delay is down to the Regional Government Consultative Committee not being able to agree on how the money raised from the prospective 5G auction should be distributed, with a total of EUR680 million (USD772.6 million) expected.
The Consultative Committee has planned a consultation to take place next month, in which it is hoped that all parties concerned will come to an agreement regarding the 5G auction before Belgium’s federal elections take place in May. Despite the uncertainty of when the 5G auction will take place, Belgium’s mobile operators Orange, Proximus and Telenet have made no changes to their initial 5G launch plans, with Orange aiming to commercially roll out 5G in Brussels in 2020, with Proximus and Telenet aiming to deploy commercial 5G a year later in 2021.