Lagos. November 19, 2013: The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has called on interested applicants to participate in the proposed auction of a single frequency licence allowing the winner to become the wholesale provider of broadband services in the country.
The imminent spectrum auction to be held in January next year will lead to the sale of a single frequency slot of 30MHz in the 2.3 GHz Band, the telecoms regulator has announced.
Eugene Juwah, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC hinted in Lagos at the weekend that the planned licence auction would be open to new entrants and incumbent players.
Juwah, who dropped the hint at a consultation forum held weekend in Lagos on the next generation broadband network programme of government, said that it was suggested to the regulatory agency that only incumbent telecoms companies should be allowed to bid exclusively in the planned licence auction.[blockquote right=”pull-right” cite=”-NCC”]The imminent spectrum auction to be held in January next year will lead to the sale of a single frequency slot of 30MHz in the 2.3 GHz Band, the telecoms regulator has announced.[/blockquote]
He clarified that rather than go the way of exclusive auction for only incumbent players, NCC will open the sale to incumbent operators and new entrants alike to slug it out in the imminent exercise.
Towards this, the telecoms regulators has called on interested applicants to express interest in the bids to become the wholesale broadband provider for the country under a national broadband plan to deepen the penetration of high speed Internet service across Nigeria.
The Commission said in a statement that its intention to sell one licence in the 2.3GHz band to qualified applicants for the provision of wholesales broadband service in Nigeria will culminate in an auction “ expected to take place toward the end of January 2014.”
Under the plan “the Commission has, as a complement to its open Access Broadband Strategy, decided to assign the 1 slot of 30MHz nationally available in the 2.3 GHz Band for the delivery of broadband wireless access service at the wholesale level, to provide ISPs and other Retail Telecoms Service Providers with the requisite bandwidth to service their subscribers.”
The regulator explains further that, “this wholesale broadband provider will have the required spectrum to expand wireless broadband access across the country to ISP’s and other Retail Telecom Service Providers for the provision of retail high speed internet access services.”
According to Juwah, “the Commission has decided to adopt auction in the award of this spectrum. This is geared towards ensuring transparency in the assignment of the available spectrum.”
He also added that Information Memorandum detailing the qualification criteria, auction processes, requisite forms and other key information will be made available at the Commission’s Head Office and its official website to guide all interested stakeholders.