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NBTC finalises 700MHz slots sale

May 14. 2019
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By   THE NATION

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THE NATIONAL Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) will put on sale three 700MHz spectrum slots, each priced at Bt17.584 billion, according to the completed draft of the 700MHz spectrum allocation.

NBTC secretary-general Takorn Tantasith said yesterday that the NBTC had already finished the final draft.

Each slot will feature a 10MHz bandwidth. 

The licence term will be 15 years and the licence payment can be divided into 10 instalments.

The NBTC had earlier planned to sell the slots with each totalling 15MHz bandwidth.

Telecom operators who win the licences will start paying for the slots next October. 

The slots will be put on sale on June 19 and proceeds from the sales will be used to compensate the six digital TV broadcasters who last week informed the NBTC their intention to return their broadcasting licences.

The NBTC will hold a public hearing on the draft of the regulation of the 700MHz allocation on May 22.

The NBTC wants the telecom operators to provide 5G wireless broadband service on the 700MHz band.

The sales of these three slots is related to the junta’s launch of the relief measures last month to ease the financial burden of the three 900MHz telecom operators.

Under the relief measures, the NBTC will split the total upfront licence fee for the 900MHz spectrum of the three licence holders into 10 instalments, giving them more time to make payments from the current four instalments.

However, the junta’s relief measures include a condition that makes it mandatory for any of 900MHz licence holders availing the relief measures to purchase the NBTC’s 700MHz spectrum slots, which will be up for sale on June 19.

See terms and conditions

The licence holders can inform the NBTC that they want to avail of the junta’s relief measures but can later opt not to buy the 700MHz licence slots. 

However, they would lose the longer instalment facility if they do not buy the slots and would have to pay as per the original payment schedule.

All the three operators have informed the NBTC their interest to avail of the junta’s relief measures, but they want to see the terms and conditions of the 700MHz licence sales first before making a final decision on whether to purchase the 700MHz licences.

The NBTC has a total of 45MHz of the 700MHz bandwidth. After selling the 30MHz, it is expected to auction the remaining 15MHz next April. 

The NBTC will also auction the 2600MHz band, the 26GHz and 28GHz bands in October this year, and the remaining 35MHz bandwidth of 1800MHz band totalling seven slots next April.

 

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