Zambia issues another invitation to buy 800MHz spectrum

Zambia issues another invitation to buy 800MHz spectrum

The Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA) has announced that it is inviting applications from eligible licensees for issuance of spectrum in the 800MHZ band.

However, the Authority has determined that spectrum in the 800 MHZ band is in very high demand. It therefore plans to be offer a restricted granting procedure. 

According to TeleGeography's CommsUpdate, ZICTA is offering a 2×10MHz block (801MHz-811MHz/842MHz-852MHz), with a reserve price of $12.5 million. Eligibilty to bid requires the holding of an Electronic Communication Network Licence for the International Market Segment. The deadline for applications is 2 March 2021.

This isn’t a one-off, however. There’s already been an award relating to 800MHz in Zambia.

In December, again after a competitive process, ZICTA awarded Airtel Networks Zambia Limited radio spectrum in the 800 MHz frequency band which, like the latest offering, was priced at $12.5 million. Part of this spectrum, according to the Zambian media, will be used to enhance the spectrum management functions of the Authority, thereby paving way for the quick introduction of 5G services in Zambia as well as enhanced QoE and services like VoLTE.

In both cases, it’s hoped that the release of the spectrum will also help the country to keep pace with the recent fast growth in mobile voice and data traffic. This is expected to continue as more socio-economic activities are increasingly conducted online in response to Covid-19 restrictions.

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