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Argentina gunning for more competition with new guidelines

The telecom authorities of Argentina have issued their recommendations for increasing competition in the sector.

With the goal of encouraging new mobile operators to enter the market as a means of fostering competition, watchdog Enacom is set to call for a spectrum auction “within no more than six months”. The allocation of new frequencies is aimed at increasing the overall quality of mobile offerings.

There are three major players in the Argentinean market – America Movil’s Claro, Telefonica’s Movistar, and Telecom Argentina’s Personal. A smaller fourth player, Clarin, has less presence in the mobile space but substantial clout in the cable market due to its Cablevision business.

Enacom also confirmed that protocols would be introduced to allow spectrum currently used for non-telecom services to be reallocated for “wireless or fixed wireless services with LTE or higher technology”. However, this is not limited to mobile.

Revisions to spectrum policies will allow telecom firms to offer cable TV services, while conversely letting satellite TV companies provide internet access as long as they have the requisite licences. This could lead to an increase in multiplay offerings.

Enacom has stated that the recommendations are intended to “encourage investments in new technologies to bring high-speed internet to the whole country”, adding that it is aiming to safeguard an investment environment that “protects the deployment of infrastructure for 15 years in last-mile networks”.

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