Anatel approves 4.9GHz band for 5G; overhauls competition frameworks

Anatel approves 4.9GHz band for 5G; overhauls competition frameworks

Brazilian regulator Anatel (Agencia Nacional de Telecomunicacoes) has cleared 120MHz of spectrum in the 4.9GHz band to be used for 5G services.

TeleGeography reports that Anatel is boosting the amount of available mobile spectrum between 1GHz and 6GHz from 1060MHz to 1180MHz, with the spectrum to be made available on a primary and non-exclusive basis. However, the regulatory counsellor Moises Moreira stated that there are currently no plans to auction the 4.9GHz frequencies.

Additionally, the regulator has proposed a wide-reaching update to Brazil’s General Competition Targets Plan (Plano Geral de Metas de Competicao, PGMC). Originally approved in November 2012, the PGMC was last updated in 2018, and is instrumental in establishing frameworks around competition in Brazil.

Anatel has proposed scrapping requirements in the PGMC that are deemed outdated - such as providing wholesale access to copper networks – and replacing them with more currently relevant obligations around areas including industrial network exploitation (known as EIR [exploracao industrial de rede] in Brazil) and the MVNO sector.

To prevent established players from becoming too dominant, the proposals would prevent any operator deemed to hold Significant Market Power (SMP) from forming EIR/RAN-sharing agreements in the 2.3GHz and 3.5GHz bands in cities of up to 100,000 residents up until 31st December 2030.

Regarding MVNO access, operators with SMP would be required to disclose their price and access offers for both authorised and accredited MVNOs. They would also not be permitted to sign exclusivity contracts, and would be obliged to base all prices on retail-minus methodology, involving a minimum discount of 25%.

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