Following a public consultation, Belgian telecoms regulator the Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT) has granted temporary user rights to spectrum in the 3.6GHz-3.8GHz band to five operators, namely Telenet, Proximus, Orange Belgium, Cegeka and Entropia. The rights will enable the operators to proceed with 5G deployments using the band and will remain valid until a traditional auction procedure can be organised for the 3.4GHz-3.8GHz band. The BIPT has allocated the frequencies as follows: Telenet, 3600MHz-3640MHz; Entropia, 3640MHz-3680MHz; Orange Belgium, 3680MHz-3720MHz; Cegeka, 3720MHz-3760MHz; and Proximus, 3760MHz-3800MHz.
As part of the European rollout of 5G technology, member states are required to provide frequencies in the 3.4GHz-3.8GHz band by 31 December 2020. With the federal and regional governments unable to agree how to distribute the sale proceeds, the BIPT decided to proceed with a provisional arrangement. The regulator noted that a public consultation held in April elicited several thousand responses, many relating to the perceived health risks posed by 5G radiation. It stressed, however, that the protection of public health is not within its remit and that operators will need to comply with all existing regional regulations governing radiation standards and antenna installation.