Polish regulator consults on 5G auction documentation

Polish regulator UKE started the consultation on the draft auction documentation for the prepared 5G auction. The plan is to distribute four licences in the 3480-3800 MHz band, 80 MHz each, with the reserve prices of above € 400m.  The licences shall be valid until the end of May 2035.

Coverage obligations

According to the draft regulation, the auction winners will be subject to several obligations.

First of all, a successful bidder needs to deploy at least 10 base stations in 1 voivodeship city selected from the cities indicated within 6 months of receiving the licence. Also, until 31st December 2023, at least 250 base stations throughout the country, including at least 10 base stations in each of at least 20 municipalities selected from the indicated municipalities need to be deployed. Furthermore, at least 9 voivodeship cities must be covered. Finally, until 31st December 2025, at least 500 base stations must be deployed throughout the country. This includes also at least 10 base stations in each of at least 30 of the indicated municipalities. Another requirement that needs to be fulfilled is that at least 16 voivodeship cities are covered.

Hence, UKE put these rules in place to ensure network roll-out in the largest population centres, i.e. municipalities with more than 80,000 residents.

Auctioned blocks

Four blocks of 80 MHz will be auctioned. The proposed reserve price of each block is PLN 450 million (€ 106.1m).

For the reason that not all sub-ranges are free readily, UKE devided each block into 16 sub-ranges of 5 MHz.

BlockRange (MHz)Reserve price (€m)
A3480-3560450
B3560-3640450
C3640-3720450
D3720-3800450
Auctioned blocks

For each municipality and each sub-range a date is set, from which the licensee will be entitled to use the given sub-range in given municipality. Furthermore, there will be sub-ranges in some municipalities which will be available straight from the start of the licence award, while others will become available only later. Also, in two blocks, certain sub-ranges in certain municipalities will be completely exempt from the licence.

Investment boost into 5G

The condition for the participation in the auction is an investment of at least PLN 1 bn, as well as holding nationwide licenses for frequencies from the bands 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz or 2600 MHz. This qualifies the four incumbent MNOs: Orange Polska, T-Mobile Polska, Polkomtel and P4.

The consultation period ends on 10th January 2020.

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