This page discusses the ministerial declarations at the heart of the upcoming digital dividend spectrum auction, and competition limits that have been set for that auction.
On 1 November 2011, the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, made declarations to reallocate parts of the 700 MHz (digital dividend) and 2.5 GHz bands.
On 9 February 2012, the minister announced he had directed the ACMA to impose competition limits (‘spectrum caps’) in its procedures for allocating the 700 MHz and 2.5 GHz bands.
Spectrum reallocation declarations
The minister made the declarations following recommendations from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) that parts of the 700 MHz and 2.5 GHz bands should be reallocated as spectrum licences. The ministerial declarations set out that:
the frequency bands 703–748 and 758–803 MHz in the 700 MHz band are to be reallocated as spectrum licences
the frequency bands 2500–2570 and 2620–2690 MHz in the 2.5 GHz band are to be reallocated as spectrum licences.
You can view the declarations on the Comlaw website:
The spectrum in both bands will be reallocated by auction in April 2013. The ACMA is currently developing the legislative instruments and auction rules, which will establish the auction process.
A cap has been placed on the maximum amount of spectrum that any bidder can acquire in each band in the digital dividend auction. The limits are:
2×20 MHz paired in the 700 MHz band
2×40 MHz paired in the 2.5 GHz band.
The ACMA is required to implement these limits during the auction. The auction rules will include procedures for implementing the limits.
You can view the directions on the Comlaw website:
For more information, please refer to the Department of Broadband, Communications and Digital Economy .