Paraguay’s National Telecommunications Council (Consejo Nacional de Telecomunicaciones, Conatel) has formalised its plans to award 700MHz spectrum licences in December this year. The tender document, ‘Licitacion No. 01/2017 Banda Ancha Movil’, has been authorised by the government, and will see seven 2×5MHz paired frequency blocks (see below) auctioned with a reserve price of USD12 million each. The spectrum blocks have been divided as follows:
Block C: 713MHz-718MHz/768MHz-773MHz;
Block D: 718MHz-723MHz/773MHz-778MHz;
Block E: 723MHz-728MHz/778MHz-783MHz;
Block F: 728MHz-733MHz/783MHz-788MHz;
Block G: 733MHz-738MHz/788MHz-793MHz;
Block H: 738MHz-743MHz/793MHz-798MHz; and
Block I: 743MHz-748MHz/798MHz-803MHz.
The watchdog has stipulated a 700MHz spectrum limit of 40MHz (2×20MHz) for all participating companies, while Conatel president Teresita Palacios has noted that winning bidders will be expected to extend services to underserved rural areas, via the construction of new telecentres, as part of the licensing conditions. Bids will be opened on 4 December.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, Conatel’s last spectrum auction took place in December 2015. Tigo and Claro were formally awarded 1700MHz/2100MHz 4G licences, with each company paying USD45 million for a 2×15MHz block of spectrum. Rival operators Personal and state-backed Hola sat out the proceedings.