Ireland’s Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources has published a spectrum policy consultation paper, marking the first step in a comprehensive review of the country’s radio frequency spectrum policy and a further step in meeting the commitments made in the National Broadband Plan. The Department is responsible for the development of effective policies for the regulation and optimum use of Ireland’s national radio frequency spectrum, underpinned by an appropriate legislative framework. According to the Department, the current Spectrum Policy Statement was published in September 2010 and needs to be revisited ‘in light of the rapid technological changes and the increased demands on this limited and valuable resource’. The purpose of the consultation is to assist the Department in its consideration of spectrum policy issues and the development of updated legislation in this area; the implementation of those national policies then rests with the Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg).
The objectives of the spectrum policy are to ensure that: the national spectrum resource is managed and used effectively and efficiently so as to ensure that Ireland does not lag behind the development of world-class communications infrastructures, technologies and services for the express purpose of raising its competitiveness, contributing to its economic development and improving the quality of life of its citizens; and to ensure that an adequate amount of useful spectrum continues to be available for a wide range of uses. The consultation paper poses a number of questions to stakeholders on current and future policy, as well as on the legislative framework. All submissions received by the deadline of 26 September 2014 will be considered in full and will inform the Department’s deliberations in its updating of the policy and legislation in this area.