Visitors to moitt.gov.pk, the website owned by the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication (MoITT) of the government of Pakistan, may have noticed a brief, but potentially significant, announcement about the release of spectrum for 4G.
The announcement says: “On the direction of Federal Minister for IT and Telecommunication Syed Amin Ul Haque, the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication has started working to release/auction additional available frequency spectrum for the improvement of mobile broadband services and network expansion in the country.”
The site highlights the likelihood that this network expansion will improve digital connectivity, online education, e-commerce and other areas relevant to mobile broadband.
The announcement also suggests that the release or auction of additional spectrum will play an important role in enhancing 4G services and growing the 4G subscriber base, which, the site says, “is necessary for the successful launch of 5G technology in the country”.
According to Pakistan Today, Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui, a federal secretary at the MoITT, has confirmed that the government has made available ample spectrum and decided to go ahead with an auction.
The secretary added that the spectrum could raise billions of rupees in revenue, although the benchmark price, which has yet to be set, will need to be agreed by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), which will, it seems, work with international consultants on setting the price.
No dates have yet been suggested for the auction.