Written notice | ACMA

Written notice

11 September 2015

Notice under subsection 4.4(1) of the Radiocommunications (Spectrum Licence Allocation – 1800 MHz Band) Determination 2015

AUCTION OF 1800 MHz BAND SPECTRUM

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) gives notice under subsection 4.4(1) of the Radiocommunications (Spectrum Licence Allocation – 1800 MHz Band) Determination 2015 for the 1800 MHz band spectrum auction. 

Spectrum to be auctioned

The ACMA will allocate spectrum in frequency ranges 1710 MHz – 1785 MHz and 1805 MHz – 1880 MHz, in the geographic areas specified in the designation notice and re-allocation declaration made by the Minister, through an auction (the 1800 MHz auction). 

There are a total of 147 lots on offer for the 1800 MHz auction. The lots are divided into three categories and cover 13 geographic areas, as follows:

  • category 1 lots (‘Regional Australia’)—the lots consist of 10 MHz of spectrum in paired configuration (2 x 5 MHz), with a block of 5 MHz in each of the lower part (1725–1785 MHz) and upper part (1820–1880 MHz) of the band. There are 12 lots available in each of the 12 specified geographic areas.
  • category 2 lots (‘Residual – Regional’) —the lots consist of 5 MHz of spectrum in paired configuration (2 x 2.5 MHz), with a block of 2.5 MHz in each of the lower part (1710–1712.5 MHz) and upper part (1805–1807.5 MHz) of the band. There is one lot available in each of the two specified geographic areas.
  • category 3 lot (‘Residual – Metropolitan’)—the lot consists of 10 MHz of spectrum in paired configuration (2 x 5 MHz), with a block of 5 MHz in each of the lower part (1770–1775 MHz) and upper part (1865–1870 MHz) of the band. There is one lot available in one specified geographic area. 

How the auction will be conducted

The auction will be conducted in accordance with the procedures specified in the Radiocommunications (Spectrum Licence Allocation – 1800 MHz Band) Determination 2015 (the allocation determination). The auction will be conducted online using a simultaneous multi-round ascending (SMRA) auction format.  

Section 5.1 of the allocation determination states that the ACMA may offer to allocate spectrum licences for lots at a pre-determined price without having to conduct an auction. In deciding whether it may be able to allocate spectrum licences without conducting an auction, the ACMA will take into account information provided by applicants about the lots they require. Any decision to allocate spectrum licences for lots at a pre-determined price will be made before the Auction Manager sets the start date and time for the first and second rounds of an auction.  

How to participate in the auction

The ACMA invites interested parties to apply to participate in the auction.  

To help prospective bidders prepare for the auction, the ACMA has published the Applicant information package (AIP). The AIP includes the auction guide, legislative instruments, approved forms, details about fees and payments, key dates and information on how to lodge auction documents. 

Auction guide

The auction guide provides a plain English explanation of the spectrum on offer and how interested parties can participate in the auction. 

Legislative instruments

The following are the legislative instruments for the 1800 MHz auction:

Allocation instruments

Technical instruments

Allocation limits direction

Spectrum reallocation declaration

Spectrum designation notice

Fees and payments

Application fee

The application fee for the auction is $10,000. In accordance with section 4.3 of the allocation determination, the application fee is not refundable in any circumstances. 

Starting prices, lot ratings and eligibility point value

The starting price for each lot has been set by the ACMA based on a rate of 8 cents per MHz per head of population in all categories (regional 1800 MHz band and residual spectrum) and is rounded to the nearest thousand dollars. Further information about starting prices for each lot, lot ratings and the dollar value of each eligibility point is available in the auction guide. Lot ratings are also set out in the eligibility nomination form. The eligibility nomination form can be found in the forms booklet.   

Key dates

The key dates for parties interested in applying to participate in the auction are as follows:

  Event Date

1

The ACMA advertises the auction, publishes the applicant information package and applications open.

11 September 2015

2

Application deadline. By this date, applicants will need to:

  • submit a completed application form
  • submit a completed deed of acknowledgement form
  • submit a completed deed of confidentiality form
  • pay the application fee.

11.59 pm on Thursday 1 October 2015

3

The ACMA gives each applicant details about the identity of all other applicants and their associates, and asks each applicant to make a statutory declaration about whether they are affiliated with another applicant.

After the application deadline

4

Deadline for statutory declarations requested under event #3.

Not less than five working days after the ACMA’s request

5

Deadline for any new applications submitted by applicants whom the ACMA has notified that it is satisfied are affiliated.

Not more than eight working days after notification

6

Eligibility deadline. By this date, applicants will need to:

  • lodge a completed eligibility nomination form
  • make an eligibility payment, provide a deed of financial security or do both.  

If an applicant wishes to withdraw from the auction, it must do so before the eligibility deadline.

11.59 pm on Monday 9 November 2015

7

The ACMA tells registered bidders that they have been registered and may participate in the auction, and gives them information to enable their participation (e.g., information about how to access and use the online auction system).

After the eligibility deadline

8

Mock auction held to familiarise prospective bidders with the auction system.

To be announced

9

The ACMA notifies registered bidders about the start date and time of the first round in the auction.

Not less than 10 working days before the start of the auction

10

Auction begins.

To be announced

Withdrawing from the auction

The eligibility deadline is the last time for withdrawing from the auction. A person who has applied for registration as a bidder may only withdraw from the auction before the eligibility deadline by written notice given to the ACMA. An applicant who has withdrawn will not be readmitted to the auction.

Applicants who withdraw from the auction will remain subject to the confidentiality provisions in the allocation determination until the ACMA notifies the applicant that the applicant’s confidentiality obligations have ended after the end of the auction period. Withdrawn applicants will not be refunded their application fee, but will be refunded any eligibility payment they have made to the ACMA.

How to lodge auction documents with the ACMA

Auction documents may be lodged with the ACMA by:

Email: 1800MHzauctionmanager@acma.gov.au*

Fax: (02) 6219 5353*

Delivery to:
The 1800 MHz Auction Manager
Spectrum Licensing Policy Section
Australian Communications and Media Authority
Red Building, Benjamin Offices
Chan Street
Belconnen ACT 2616.

*Subsections 1.6(2)-(4) of the allocation determination set out procedures for lodging documents by email or fax. Under these procedures:

  • where a document is lodged by email, the document must be included as an attachment and if:
    • it is a statutory declaration, a statement under section 7.3 of the allocation determination or a deed—must be in PDF format or another format approved by the auction manager;
    • it is any other type of document—must be in Word, RTF or PDF format, or another format approved by the auction manager
  • where a document is lodged by fax, the document must be accompanied by a cover sheet that states:
    • the sender's name, postal address, telephone number and fax number;
    • the number of pages transmitted, including the cover sheet; and
    • if the faxed document is a completed application form, a completed eligibility nomination form, a statutory declaration, a statement under section 7.3 of the allocation determination or a deed, the type of document lodged.

Subsections 4.7(3), 4.12(6) and 4.15(4) of the allocation determination set out additional requirements for certain documents lodged by email or fax. Under these rules:

  • where a completed application form, deed of acknowledgement form, or deed of confidentiality form is given to the ACMA by email or fax before the applicable deadline, the original document must be received by the ACMA no later than three working days after the applicable deadline (or, if the ACMA agrees to a later time, by the agreed time) for the application to be valid.
  • if an eligibility nomination form or a deed of financial security form is given to the ACMA by email or fax before the eligibility deadline, the original document must be received by the ACMA no later than three working days after the eligibility deadline (or, if the ACMA agrees to a later time, by the agreed time) for the nomination to be taken to have been made, or for the deed to be taken to have been given.

How to contact us

Questions about the auction can be directed to the Auction Manager, Eleanor Kay, on (02) 6219 5430 or at 1800MHzauctionmanager@acma.gov.au.

For media enquiries, please contact Emma Rossi, Media Manager, (02) 9334 7719 and 0434 652 063 or media@acma.gov.au.

Last updated: 14 February 2017