Afghanistan awards 5 MHz additional frequency to Aftel

Afghanistan awards 5 MHz additional frequency to Aftel

The Afghanistan Telecom Regulatory Authority (ATRA) has granted MHz frequency in 1800 band to the state-owned telco Afghan Telecom (Aftel), which offers wireless services under the Salaam brand, for providing broadband advanced/ 4G services.

In the country’s first spectrum auction last month, ATRA put up for sale frequencies in the 1800MHz (three lots of 2×5MHz), 2100MHz (two lots of 2×5MHz), and 2600MHz (three lots of 2×10MHz) bands, intending to supply the airwaves needed for operators to provide more advanced mobile broadband services.

The majority of the licences went unsold, however, with Aftel emerging as the only winning bidder and paying the base price of USD17.2 million for its 15-year concession.

Omar Mansoor Ansari, ATRA Acting-Chairman, expressed that telecom network is changing and new technology generations having better speed than previous ones are being introduced, thus, wireless and wired networks operating in the country need to be configured for providing advanced services in the future.

“Frequency sources were previously allocated on an equal basis but they are now allocated to the telecom companies through auction and competition to provide the necessary opportunity for 4G Services; ATRA licenses are not technology-based afterward since mobile service license is apart from technology license. ATRA is working on how the ground is paved for efficient use and cost of spectrum sources are provided for telecom companies in segregation”, added Omar.

Abdul Kareem Totakhel, Deputy for State Affairs, termed the 4G auction a big achievement for the country in the current condition and congratulated ATRA and telecom companies for this success and accomplishment while speaking in the ceremony.

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