Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services
4 April 2019
The telecommunications and postal services department has confirmed that the final policy directive on spectrum allocation will be issued by end of April 2019.
The confirmation follows a recent meeting between minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams and deputy minister Pinky Kekana and captains of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry.
The meeting was held to “deliberate and finalise consultations on their interpretation of the spectrum licencing process as defined by the law”.
In a statement, the department declared that the licensing of high-demand spectrum is “deemed necessary to lessen resource constraints experienced by incumbent mobile operators, enable transformation of a historically vertically integrated market, level the playing field and enable new entrants into the market. Further, it will contribute to reducing the cost to communicate and drive universal services and access”.
The minister informed the meeting that since the introduction of mobile broadband, “spectrum has turned out to be both a competitive and an anti-competitive tool for incumbent network operators and a barrier to entry for new entrants.”
Government wants to ensure that spectrum is effectively and efficiently licensed in order to drive revenue generation and ensure inclusive participation in the ICT sector.
Participants at the meeting agreed that the “spectrum policy directive and licencing processes must be swiftly finalised as they will propel the industry forward; as well as enable effective and efficient delivery of the Fourth Industrial Revolution imperatives that require wireless networks as connectivity enablers”.