Colombian spectrum auction derailed by lack of interest

13 Nov 2019

Colombia’s planned multi-band spectrum auction – which had been scheduled to take place on 12 December – has been cast into doubt, after only Claro registered to participate. The Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications (Ministerio de Tecnologias de la Informacion y las Comunicaciones, MinTIC) remains keen to stage a sale before year-end, but it is thought that the lack of a reserve price has deterred Movistar and Tigo – and the country’s smaller players – from agreeing to participate. ICT minister Sylvia Constain commented: ‘The industry has been clear in [sending a] message about the need to know the reserve value. Therefore, taking into account the welfare of the country above all, we have decided to provide this information.’

The spectrum auction is slated to include 2×45MHz blocks of 700MHz spectrum (703MHz-748MHz/758MHz-803MHz) split into four 2×10MHz blocks and one 2×5MHz portion; plus a 2×2.5MHz 1900MHz block and eight 10MHz blocks in the 2500MHz band. The government wants the country’s cellcos to use the spectrum to boost rural coverage.

Colombia, Ministerio de Tecnologias (MinTIC)