PTA Releases Information Memorandum for 850MHZ Spectrum Auction

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has released Information Memorandum (IM) for the auction of spectrum in the 850 MHz range and to grant the successful bidders rights to establish, maintain and operate 3G/4G network and to provide 3G/4G services across Pakistan.

The process of the award is named as the Next Generation Mobile Services Award (NGMSA). This Information Memorandum (IM) from PTA sets out the rules, process, planned timetable and other background information to help prospective applicants to decide if they wish to apply to participate in the NGMSA.

Hence, the document aims to provide operators with auction details.

Here are important dates:

  • Publication of Information Memorandum (IM): April 30th, 2016
  • Consultation period Ends: May 14th, 2016
  • Notification of changes to the NGMSA rules and procedures if any: May 19th, 2016
  • Information session for prospective bidders: May 21st, 2016
  • Deadline for Prospective applicants to submit Application form with Pre-Bid deposits: May 29th, 2016 (4PM – Pakistan Time)
  • PTA notifies qualified applicants: June 4th, 2016
  • Information package to be provided to qualified applicants: June 7th, 2016
  • Mock Auction for Qualified Bidders (if required): June 9th, 2016
  • Auction: June 11th, 2016

Frequency lot included in the auction:

  • Spectrum Band: 850MHz
  • Spectrum Quantity: 2x10MHz
  • Spectrum Range:
    • UL: 824-834MHz
    • DL: 869-879MHz

Things to note:

  • PTA, with this new spectrum auction, has set minimum user data rate of 512 kbps, up from 128kbps limit it had set previously for 2014 auction of 3G spectrum.
  • New spectrum will be for 14 telecom regions of Pakistan, excluding AJK
  • PTA set the base price for the spectrum at USD395 million
  • New as well as current operators can bid for the spectrum
  • Spectrum will be technology neutral and either 2G, 3G or 4G can be deployed with-in the awards spectrum.

Prospective applicants are advised by PTA to seek their own expert advice on whether or not to participate in the award process and on any other matters concerning financial, legal, technical or other implications of the award process and associated policies.

PTA said that it might also conduct an information session for prospective applicants to explain the auction process and rules and other details.

This information session will take take place soon and will be announced by PTA. Its only purpose will be to clarify any questions that prospective applicants may have about the application process and auction itself.

Information Memorandum can be downloaded from this link.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK


  • ahmed

    Who will be interested in it telenor, ufone and some new market entrant

    • AbdulB1

      I am sure telenor wont be coming as they have more investments in India.

      • Qasim57

        Telenor already has a sizable presence in the Pakistani market. Sure India is a big market, but Pakistan is also the world’s 6th biggest population.

        • AbdulB1

          Telenor will be following napak Suzuki and will become a problem for Pakistan.

          • INDIAN

            Telenor India is now looking at upcoming 4G biggest auctions in india.

            TC has approved the biggest spectrum sale, likely in July, which will debut 4G airwaves in 700 MHz band. A total 2,142 MHz of airwaves will be auctioned across 700 MHz, 850 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz and 2500 MHz. Moreover, the telecom department could release additional over 200 MHz in 1800 MHz band, post-harmonisation.

  • Rizwan Yaqoob

    Time for a new entrant. There should be someone new to replace Warid.

  • Yasir Ali Raza

    PTA Mobilink Warid merger ke permission deny ke bjaay companies ko lollipop dy rahi ha

  • Jawad Ahmad

    New entrant would enjoy being technology neutral and use all 2G/3G/4G services within defined spectrum. Much more feasible than 1800 Mhz spectrum

    • AbdulB1

      no it also depends on what technology is used. If the phone does not support VoLTE and operator is using this spectrum for LTE, complains shall remain.

    • BADAR

      How 850 Mhz is better than 1800 Mhz? Please explain it in details if not mind.

      • Fakhre Alam

        low spectrum reach far distances hence small number of cell sites are required to be installed.

        • BADAR

          Thanks…

      • Jawad Ahmad

        850 has wide coverage rather than 1800 Mhz. For example where 1 tower of 1800 Mhz covers 500 Meter area. 850 Mhz would cover 1 KM to 1.5 KM. Means better signals inside buildings

  • AbdulB1

    ”Spectrum will be technology neutral and either 2G, 3G or 4G can be deployed with-in the awards spectrum. ” , so finally stupid govt woke up and started auctioning spectrum the right way.

  • Ruby

    Excluding AJk??

  • Hasan

    Possible new entrants ??
    I dont think this is possible !!
    Btw any one has any idea who might be the possible new entrants ?

    • BADAR

      TurkCel, Ooredoo, or Zain

  • BADAR

    Are there two 850 Mhz Spectrum as you mentioned above?
    Spectrum Quantity: 2x10MHz

    • Zafar Abbas Rizvi

      Every spectrum has 2 frequencies 1 for downloading and 2nd for uploading. That makes a complete spectrum. So if there is a 10 MHz spectrum, it will be 2*10 1 each for downloading and uploading.
      So above spectrum is also a single 2*10 MHz spectrum

      • BADAR

        Thanks

  • saeed

    850/700 coverage is more than 1800/2100 because of this formula C = 1/Lamda(wave length). With 700/850 you need less towers which is lot of saving for carriers(Telenor,Mobilink) but on the other hand 700/850 creates interference. With 700/850, each cell tower covers around 4 to 5 miles while with 2100 , it covers only 2 miles. 700/850 is for Coverage but 2100 is for Capacity ( close to tower traffic only).

    • Badar

      What is coverage and capacity? means number of users? and interfere with which devices?

      • saeed

        Let’s say if you have city area of 10 miles(circle). With 700 you might need only 6 cell towers but with 2100 you will need 9 cell towers.It saves lot of money for Telenor/Mobilink for leasing,equipment,maintenance,hardware issues….
        Let’s say Telenor has 10 Mhz ( 700 or 850) and 10 Mhz of (2100) transmitting on the same cell tower ( 2 Carrier site) then UE close to the site will access to 2100 first ( capacity) and then after certain limit it will move to 700. Your throughput(data) is better on 2100 because you are close to tower.