Telecoms regulator Ofcom has published the proposed annual licence fees for UK spectrum licences in the 2100MHz band. The target frequencies were originally auctioned back in 2000 with a fixed licence term of 20 years, but following a government direction, Ofcom varied the terms of these concessions in 2011 to make them indefinite and to require the payment of annual licence fees from 1 January 2022.
The concessions, which are currently held by the UK’s four network operators – EE, O2 UK, Three UK and Vodafone UK – include paired and unpaired spectrum. With the government direction requiring Ofcom to set fees ‘that reflect the full market value of the spectrum’, it has proposed the following charges: GBP567,000 (USD785,000) per MHz for the 119.1MHz of paired 2100MHz spectrum; and GBP290,000 per MHz for the 20.1MHz of unpaired 2100MHz spectrum. Meanwhile, the regulator has said it also proposing to increase these fees by consumer price index (CPI) each year.
Interested parties have been given until 8 September 2021 to respond to the consultation.