Opinion Pakistan greenlights auction of 5g spectrum
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has greenlighted the much-awaited 5G spectrum auction and established an advisory committee for completing the preparations, ARY News reported on Wednesday.
Caretaker Minister for Information Technology (IT) Dr Umar Saif said in a statement that the federal cabinet greenlighted the auction of the 5G spectrum.
He said that an advisory committee for the spectrum auction was constituted which would be headed by the caretaker finance minister. The committee members include IT and industry ministers.
Umar Saif detailed that 300 MHz spectrum would be available for the 5G auction. The spectrum will be auctioned after finalising the consultant through the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA).
The IT minister said that the federal cabinet has also approved telecom infrastructure sharing. He added that infrastructure sharing ahead of the 5G auction is a business-friendly tool for all telecom companies which would enable all firms to install equipment on other towers.
It is also pertinent to mention here that Pakistan is already late if compared with other countries in launching the 5G spectrum.
Incidentally, the Ministry of IT and Telecom had announced to roll out 5G by the middle of 2023, and the ministry was vying to woo foreign investors too.
Last month, the IT ministry had issued instructions to Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and related departments.
The government is expected to raise millions of dollars from the 5G auction, with the spectrum auction likely to be held by August 2024, sources said.
Sources said that mobile companies are currently using around 367 MHz of spectrum and the new spectrum auction will increase this volume to over 600 MHz.
It also emerged earlier that the launch of the much-awaited 5G spectrum in Pakistan within 10 months is nearly impossible as the local mobile operators reportedly are not ready to buy 5G licenses owing to economic instability.