Anatel gets new powers as it prepares for 5G vote

Anatel gets new powers as it prepares for 5G vote

The National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel), the Brazilian regulator, has been allowed to sign commitments with telecommunications operators to expand internet access, especially in locations with low or no connectivity, thanks to a decree from the country’s president.

This, according to local press reports, is an adjustment to existing regulations whereby commitments made by Anatel only related to investments in capacity, such as the installation of optical fibres.

The presidential decree has also removed the exclusivity boasted by former state-owned monopoly telecoms company Telebras in the implementation of private communication networks in the Federal Public Administration. Now other public or private bodies will be able to provide this service.

Anatel is also in the news as it has scheduled a meeting for Friday 24 September to conclude voting on the planned 5G auction.

The decision had been delayed after a review was requested by a counsellor. In fact the text of the proposal on the vote is apparently still being discussed. The proposal will also need to be assessed, presumably after the vote, by the Federal Court of Accounts (TCU).

So far, despite some technical objections, the majority of ministers are expected to approve the agency's proposal, which will confirm the frequency bands for sale and define the conditions – both payment and coverage-related – that operators will have to meet.

All being well, the aim is that the auction will take place in October this year.

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