BIPT proposes temporary solution to enable initial 5G rollout

3 Feb 2020

Telecoms regulator the Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT) has proposed granting temporary licences for the 3.5GHz band to enable an initial rollout of 5G in Belgium, pending a political agreement between federal and regional governments. Operators are invited to apply for the licences before 28 February 2020, after which the regulator will finalise plans for assigning frequencies. The proposal would also extend current 2G (900MHz and 1800MHz) and 3G (2100MHz) licences expiring in March 2021 for six months to ensure service continuity.

As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, the Belgian federal government presented plans in mid-2018 for a multi-band 5G auction that was scheduled for the end of 2019. However, discussions have been delayed by disagreement over how the anticipated EUR680 million (USD745.6 million) raised by the sale would be distributed between the regions.