Estonia’s Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority (Tarbijakaitse ja Tehnilise Jarelevalve Amet, TTJA) has received four applications for its forthcoming auction of three 3.5GHz licences for 5G services. As expected, the three incumbent cellcos – Telia, Elisa and Tele2 – have come forward, with the fourth entry coming from Lithuania-based telecoms and media firm Bite Group.
Bite Group’s activities in Estonia currently centre on its TV channel TV3 and streaming platform Go3, so a successful bid for a 5G licence would bring additional competition to the country’s telecoms sector.
Andres Suti, Minister of Enterprise and Information Technology, says having four firms chasing three licences will be good for consumers: ‘I am glad that four companies are interested in the competition, and one of them is a newcomer. This shows that companies have a definite interest in the development of the Estonian communications market and also gives confidence that 5G services will reach the market as soon as possible … Estonian consumers can only win from the competition, because this way the service will be of higher quality and the prices will be more reasonable.’
The public tender for three concessions in the 3410MHz-3800MHz range was initially announced on 19 February 2019 and then postponed later that year. Under the new auction terms, the starting price for each licence will be EUR1.597 million (USD1.75 million). The TTJA expects to begin the bidding process towards the end of this month and for it to be completed by June.