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Icasa starts process on making more spectrum available to achieve 5G goals

Business Report logo Business Report 2022/08/18 Ashley Lechman

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has begun the process of making more radio frequency spectrum available to telecommunications operators who want to provide broadband services.

Icasa said that the purpose of the notice is to solicit views from interested stakeholders regarding the IMT radio frequency spectrum bands to be considered by the Authority during the second phase of the IMT licensing process.

The deadline for submission of written representations to the Authority is 4pm on Monday, 19 September 2022.

Icasa further stated that the second phase of the IMT Spectrum licensing process will provide additional capacity to licensees in order to meet the continuous demand for capacity growth in mobile services.

5G rollout

The authority said that this will also contribute towards achieving the capabilities and requirements of IMT-2020 systems and beyond for the deployment of Fifth Generation (5G) Networks in order to achieve the South Africa Connect targets, as well as to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The main aim of licensing the low and mid frequency bands within the designated frequency ranges is to increase nationwide broadband access for all citizens by 2025.

“The Authority reiterates its determination to support the development and uptake of IMT services for the benefit of economic growth, job creation and access by the people of South Africa to online services, information and communication. The current IMT Roadmap process and the Long-term Spectrum Outlook consultation signal the Authority’s commitment to making the necessary spectrum available in an orderly and timely fashion,” Icasa said in a statement.

“The current information memorandum is primarily focused to proceed with the licensing of the unsold “Lot 9” in the 800 MHz radio frequency band, resultant from the inaugural auction, and those mid band IMT radio frequency channels that are currently and immediately available", Councillor Peter Zimri of Icasa said.

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