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ACMA Seeks Comment on Potential Re-Allocation of 850/900 MHz Band for 5G Use

Australia’s Media and Communications Authority (ACMA) is consulting on matters relevant to a potential re-allocation of the 850/900 MHz band by issuing spectrum licences across Australia, excluding the mid-west Radio Quiet Zone.

In December 2019, ACMA released its Reconfiguring the 900 MHz band/Allocating the 850 MHz expansion band decision paper. This followed consultation with industry and the public in April 2019. It is now proposing to recommend that the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts make a re-allocation declaration for the band.

The proposal follows extensive consultation with stakeholders and the consideration of reform options for spectrum in the 850/900 MHz band, to enable it to be used for 4G and 5G mobile broadband services.

ACMA believes that:

  • the best way to achieve reconfiguration of the 850/900 MHz band is to re-allocate the spectrum and undertake a price-based allocation of spectrum licences.
  • 2 MHz of spectrum should be allocated to accommodate the future downshift of spectrum licences in the adjacent 850 MHz band.

In accordance with the Radiocommunications Act 1992, the Authority has prepared a written notice setting out the terms of the draft recommendation. It has also prepared a draft spectrum re-allocation recommendation consultation paper.

Interested parties have until July 8, 2020, to comment.


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