The Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN) has issued three 5G licences following its sale of spectrum in the 700MHz and 800MHz bands last week.
The auction raised approximately NAD28.6 million (USD1.47 million), with mobile providers MTC (Mobile Telecommunications Company) and TN (Telecom Namibia) procuring licences alongside local ISP Loc8 Mobile.
Each obtained one of the three available lots, with local outlet Business Express reporting that Loc8 paid NAD5.1 million for Lot A (consisting of 2x20MHz in the 700MHz range), TN won Lot B (two 2x10MHz blocks in the 700MHz-800Mhz range) with a bid of NAD15.4 million, and MTC bid NAD15.4 million for Lot C (2×20MHz in the 800Mhz band).
The licences are valid for ten years, and holders will have the option to renew them for a similar amount of time. Licensees are obliged to provide 4G and 5G mobile services with a downlink data speed not lower than 20Mbps, and that meet quality of service (QoS) regulations.
To improve universal access, CRAN has also obliged winning bidders to bring 4G coverage above 80% in six regions - Kunene and Zambezi (Lot A), Otjozondjupa and Omaheke (Lot B), Hardap and Kavango West (Lot C).
CRAN CEO Emilia Nghikembua stated that by issuing 4G & 5G licences, the regulator aims to support deployment of emerging technologies to enable universal access in remote and rural areas, thereby boosting digital inclusion. Trials for 5G services have been approved and are expected to commence imminently, concluding on 31st December.