Macedonia Offers Additional 3G Licenses
Published on: 1st February 2009
Macedonia's telecoms regulator, The Agency for Electronic Communications has announced plans to award three additional 3G licenses through a public tender. The licenses will be valid for just ten years - which is shorter than is usual for most countries which tend to award fifteen-year licenses.
The country has two existing 3G license holders.
T-Mobile was awarded a license late last year, while Cosmofon, which is owned by Greece's Cosmote was awarded a license in early 2008.
Any bidders will be required to commence commercial operations within six months of being awarded the licenses, and cover 50% of the population within one year. The license also requires that the 3G coverage be extended to 80% of the population within three years.
The frequency bands available are:
- 2x15MHz: B1 (1935-1950MHz) and B1' (2125-2140MHz) UMTS FDD and 5MHz: b (1905-1910MHz) UMTS TDD
- 2x15MHz: C1 (1950-1965MHz) and C1' (2140-2155MHz) UMTS FDD and 5MHz: c (1910-1915MHz) UMTS TDD
- 2x15MHz: D1 (1965-1980MHz) and D1' (2155-2170MHz) UMTS FDD and 5MHz: d (1915-1920MHz) UMTS TDD
The country currently has three operators, and figures from the Mobile World subscriber tracking database reports that their market shares at the end of last September are: T-Mobile (58.8%), Cosmofon (29.9%) and VIP (11.3%).
As part of the market liberalization, the country's three existing operators launched Mobile Number Portability last November.