Date
23 March 2017
Singapore is seeking to boost competition in its mobile phone service industry. Photo: Bloomberg
Singapore is seeking to boost competition in its mobile phone service industry. Photo: Bloomberg

Singapore to auction spectrum in bid to lure new mobile provider

Singapore outlined plans to auction additional spectrum this year as it seeks to lure a new mobile operator to compete with the city’s three existing service providers.

The Infocomm Development Authority (IDA), the local telecom regulator, will allocate a total of 235 megahertz of spectrum in two stages, Bloomberg News reported.

The first stage will only open to pre-qualified bidders that do not currently operate a nationwide mobile network in Singapore, IDA was quoted as saying in a statement Thursday.

The agency will make available 60 MhZ of spectrum at a reserve price of S$35 million, with the rights commencing in April 2017.

The IDA will then hold a general auction open to the three incumbent providers — M1, SingTel and StarHub — and any new entrant arising from the first stage of bidding, the report said.

Any new mobile network operator will be required to provide nationwide coverage by October 2018.

“This release of spectrum is timely as it will support the growth of applications that rely on data, as well as new growth areas,” IDA Managing Director Jacqueline Poh said in the statement.

“Having more players in the market will give consumers a greater choice in selecting an offering that best suits their needs.”

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