Austria publishes terms for multi-band 5G spectrum auction

12 Dec 2019

Austria’s Regulatory Authority for Broadcasting and Telecoms (RTR) has published the conditions for the country’s ‘second 5G auction’, which is scheduled to take place in spring 2020. The regulator is looking to award licences for spectrum in the 700MHz, 1500MHz and 2100MHz frequency bands. Following two public consultations on the auction conditions, the RTR says it has re-examined the potential costs incurred by operators for a nationwide supply of services and has decided to lower the minimum bid by EUR55 million (USD61 million), to EUR239.3 million, while also increasing the duration of the licences from 20 to around 25 years. Interested parties have until April 2020 to prepare for the auction.

The auction will be divided into two phases: the first will see frequencies in the 700MHz (six blocks) and 2100MHz (twelve blocks) bands allocated, with eight blocks of 1500MHz spectrum set to be awarded in the second stage. In terms of coverage obligations, 700MHz licence winners will be obliged to supply 900 underserved communities. In addition, a ‘bonus system’ has been developed whereby operators will be able to gain a reduction in the spectrum price if they agree to cover additional underserved areas.