NCC pulls the brake on Spectrum licencing

The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has suspended the Spectrum Trading Guidelines (2018) for the telecommunications industry.

Director, Public Affairs at the Commission, Dr Henry Nkemadu said it was part of the decision taken by the Board of Commissioners of the Commission at its recent meeting.

Nkemadu said the board “rose from its meeting recently with this position and is informing all licensed telecommunications operators, prospective investors, industry stakeholders and the general public in that regard.

“The Board had earlier taken the decision for Spectrum Trading in response to telecommunications global dynamics, as well as the efforts to optimally utilize and maximize the benefits of the Spectrum scarce resource.

“Spectrum is a scarce commodity which when inefficiently utilized greatly limits broadband coverage and speeds.

“The current Spectrum Trading Guidelines were developed in 2018 after industry-wide consultations and this instrument allows that the Spectrum resource be traded on the Secondary Market through Transfer, Sharing or Leasing upon satisfying stipulated regulatory conditions.”

He explained that the Nigerian National Broadband Plan, NNBP, 2020 – 2025 launched by President Muhammadu Buhari, in March made it imperative for the review of the guidelines.

He noted that the review was “to ensure that unutilized Spectrum is fairly traded and to facilitate rollout by other operators amongst others.”