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27 December 2012

Russia plans to introduce auction sale of radio frequencies

The Ministry of Communications & Mass Media of Russia informs that at a meeting of the State Commission for Radio Frequencies Minister Nikolai Nikiforov suggested considering the launch of a radio frequency bidding mechanism in the form of auctions.

"Trading in the form of an auction, in our opinion, is more democratic and transparent, compared with competitions. Besides, it also allows supplementing the country’s budget and receiving subsidies for development of communication networks," Nikiforov said.

Today, decree #8 of the Russian government from 12 January 2006 does not really allow holding auctions for the right to provide communication services using radio frequency spectrum. As auctions can be conducted only if the radio frequency spectrum is not allocated between radio networks or not used by networks of any purpose. Due to the fact that the Russian Commission for Radio Frequencies in October 2012 adopted a decision on the allocation of radio frequencies in the 1800 MHz band, the license for these frequencies must be drawn on competitions.

Commission’s members agreed with the necessity to suspend paragraph 3 of its Decision #12-15-03 from 2 October 2012, which instructed Roskomnadzor to carry out trading, to be organized in accord with the valid version of the government’s decree in the form of competitions. After the government passes a decree with new conditions of trading in the form of auctions, paragraph 3 of the Commission’s above-mentioned decision is resumed, and then Roskomnadzor is able to hold auctions for the first time.