Belgian regulator to auction free spectrum in 2600MHz band

21 Feb 2020

Telecoms regulator the Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT) has announced plans to make the remaining free spectrum in the 2600MHz band available for auction. The decision is in response to a request for a licence in the band from an unnamed company and increasing market demand for spectrum. The allocation of this spectrum is based on the Royal Decree of 22 December 2010 on radio access in the 2500MHz-2690MHz frequency band, as well as the current Article 30 of the Electronic Communications Act of 13 June 2005. Spectrum in this frequency band was initially put up for auction in 2011 during the country’s first 4G auction, but one block of 15MHz duplex (2520MHz-2535MHz/2640MHz-2655MHz) remained unsold. No additional legislative action is required to make the free spectrum available through a new auction and the holder of this final licence, which will be valid for 15 years from 2020 to 2035, will be able to set up a national 2600MHz network. The spectrum cap of 2×20MHz means existing licence holders in this band are excluded. Proximus and Orange already have 2×20MHz in this band and Telenet 2×15MHz. The minimum price for the licence is EUR15.01 million (USD16.3 million) and will not be subject to specific coverage conditions.