Wireless provider Jazz, which was rebranded from Mobilink following its acquisition and merger with smaller rival Warid, was officially awarded a 4G licence on 30 June. The provider had entered the only bid in the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority’s (PTA’s) most recent spectrum auction earlier this year, submitting the minimum offer of USD295 million for the 2×10MHz block of 1800MHz frequencies. In addition to the USD295 million fee, the cellco will be required to pay a 10% tax (i.e. USD29.5 million) to the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
As noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Jazz entered the 4G market via its 2016 merger with Warid Telecom, which had refarmed its existing 1800MHz holdings in 2014 to offer the service rather than compete in that year’s frequency auction. As such, the acquisition of additional 1800MHz band spectrum will substantially improve Jazz’s LTE capabilities.