2nd 5G frequency license auction about to start in Estonia

  • 2022-06-10
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - An auction for the issuance of frequency licenses in the second 5G frequency band is about to start with invitations to take part therein sent to three communications companies.

"Despite there being one fewer participants, it can be assumed that the auction will nonetheless be tense. The 57 rounds of the first auction showed that competition is fierce and telecoms are very interested in offering 5G services. We wish the participants much success and patience," director general of the Estonian Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority Kristi Talving said.

Minister of Entrepreneurship and IT Andres Sutt said that the start of the auction of the second 5G frequency authorization supports the delivery of ultra fast internet to the Estonian people.

"Strong competition between telecommunications companies seen in the pursuit of the first 5G frequency authorization also promises an exciting auction this time. There are two more frequency authorizations to distribute and competition between service providers is becoming stronger. For regular users, it means an opportunity to start enjoying the benefits provided by ultra fast 5G internet sooner because telecoms are actively making an effort to deliver it to consumers," Sutt said.

The minister noted that Estonia has an interesting period ahead of it because 5G internet will bring solutions fostering added value and efficiency growth to various sectors, which will boost innovation and economic growth.

As a result of the competition, three 5G technology based networks will be built in the 3,410-3,800 MHz frequency range. The holder of the frequency license is obligated to make available to the end user a communication service based on at least version 15 of the 5G standard within one year of receiving the license, and within two years install and activate at least 200 base stations supporting communications services across Estonia, 100 of which can be located in Harju County while there must be at least five base stations in each county.

The frequency range about to be put up for auction will be 3,480-3,540 MHz and 3,660-3,730 MHz as well as 3,540-3,670 MHz following a transition to the 130 MHz band. The starting price of the second frequency license is 1,597,000 euros with bids accepted from Tele2 Eesti AS, Telia Eesti, AS and UAB Bite Lietuva.  The bid increment is 100,000 euros, which means that in each subsequent round the bid must be higher by at least 100,000 euros than the highest bid in the previous round.

Winner of the first frequency license auction, Elisa Eesti AS, has to date payed a one-time license fee of 7,206,208 euros and an annual state fee of 81,900 euros, and can thus start establishing 5G networks in Estonia. As an authorization has already been issued to Elisa Eesti AS, the company will no longer be able to bid for the second and third frequency license.