- 1Open for comment06 May 2019
- 2Consultation closed06 Jun 2019
The ACMA reviewed all submissions received for this consultation. We carefully considered the issues raised when preparing the final spectrum reallocation recommendation to the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts (the Minister). A copy of the ACMA’s recommendation can be downloaded from the table below.
We have concluded our considerations on the four main reallocation declaration elements:
- licence type
- parts of the spectrum
- reallocation period
- reallocation deadline.
Two elements of the final reallocation declaration are different from those consulted upon in the draft reallocation recommendation. Firstly, the reallocation period changed from two-and-a-half years to three years. Secondly, some of the geographic boundaries changed, which resulted in a reduction from 34 to 29 specified cities and regional centres in the recommendation to the Minister.
Other matters relevant to the allocation will be subject to further consultation with stakeholders as part of developing the draft allocation instruments.
The Minister made the Radiocommunications (Spectrum Re-allocation—26 GHz Band) Declaration 2019.
Subsection 153C(2) of the Radiocommunications Act 1992 requires the ACMA to publish on its website a notice stating that the declaration has been made. View the notice.
The ACMA continues to work towards timely release of spectrum to support the deployment of 5G services in Australia.
In April 2019, the ACMA released the Future use of the 26 GHz band—Planning decisions and preliminary views paper, which:
- Identified the frequency range 25.1–27.5 GHz (the 26 GHz band) for spectrum licensing in 34 specified cities and regional centres.
- Identified a range of apparatus and class licensing measures to facilitate a broad range of wireless broadband use cases in the 26 GHz band.
Accordingly, the ACMA intends to recommend that the minister responsible for the communications portfolio (the minister) make a reallocation declaration stating that the 26 GHz band should be re-allocated by issuing spectrum licences in these 34 defined areas.
In accordance with the Radiocommunications Act 1992 (the Act), the minister must not make a spectrum reallocation declaration unless the ACMA has made a recommendation to do so. Before it makes its recommendation, the ACMA must prepare a written notice setting out the terms of the draft recommendation and publish a copy of the notice on its website. The ACMA must also give each potentially affected apparatus licensee a copy of the notice and invite them to provide written comments on the draft recommendation. The ACMA must have regard to any comments from potentially affected licensees and may have regard to other submissions when preparing its final recommendation to the minister. With this in mind, the ACMA has prepared the draft spectrum reallocation recommendation consultation paper for the 26 GHz band (available from the Downloads table above).
The ACMA’s notice under section 153G of the Act—Proposed re-allocation of the 26 GHz frequency band (also available from the Downloads table above) sets out the terms of the draft recommendation:
|Element of draft recommendation||The ACMA's proposed recommendation|
|Licence type||Spectrum licences|
|Parts of the spectrum||25.1–27.5 GHz in 34 specified cities and regional centres|
|Reallocation period||Two-and-a-half years|
|Reallocation deadline||12 months before the end of the reallocation period|
Should the minister accept the ACMA’s recommendation to make the proposed spectrum reallocation declaration, the ACMA intends to allocate the spectrum licences through an auction process. The consultation paper therefore seeks comment from stakeholders on matters relevant to a spectrum auction, including the auction format to be used and the way the spectrum should be configured for allocation.
Following consideration of submissions, the ACMA will finalise the recommendation for formal submission to, and consideration by, the minister.
As the government is currently in a caretaker period, it is noted that the spectrum management policies of an incoming government may have implications for future spectrum planning arrangements.
Issue for comment
The ACMA welcomes comments from stakeholders on the terms of the notice under section 153G of the Radiocommunications Act 1992—Proposed re-allocation of the 26 GHz frequency band, and any other issue raised in the consultation paper.