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Thailand Plans to Auction 2.6GHz in 2H19

Thai telecoms regulator NBTC has revealed plans to have 2600MHz spectrum auction in the 2H of 2019 as part of efforts to facilitate the launch of 5G by 2020.

The regulator has appointed a subcommittee to work on recalling unused spectrum for its reallocation for 5G. The first priority will be to recall some spectrum in the 2600MHz range for next year’s auction. The spectrum is currently held by state-owned public broadcaster MCOT under a concession agreement that ends in 2022. A second subcommittee will be set up to negotiate compensation for returning the spectrum, as per Thai report states.

NBTC already plans to hold an auction of 45MHz of 700MHz spectrum freed up from digital and analog TV broadcasting in the Q3. Thailand plans to switch off analog TV broadcasting in 2020.The NBTC also plans to recall spectrum in the 470MHz, 1500MHz, 3400-3800MHz and 26-28GHz bands as part of the spectrum reallocation process. These frequencies are currently held by companies including state-owned operator TOT, satellite operator Thaicom and Chevron Thailand.