Ukraine’s National Commission for State Regulation of Electronic Communications, Radio Frequency Spectrum & Postal Services (NCEC) announced that on 28 February 2023 the Supreme Court upheld the watchdog’s decision of 29 December 2020 refusing to renew a wireless spectrum licence in the 3.4GHz-3.6GHz range which had been held by FreshTel. The end of the legal dispute will support moves to reallocate the range for 5G mobile services.
The regulator declined the application from former WiMAX fixed wireless broadband operator FreshTel (registered as Ukrainian High Technologies) to renew a licence dated 1 November 2006, after the company reportedly failed to comply with licensing conditions, incompletely paid spectrum fees and ceased submitting mandatory reports to the Commission. The NCEC noted that the apex court ruling ‘unlocked the possibility of introducing new radio technologies in the 3400MHz-3600MHz radio frequency bands’.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, back in November 2019 the Ukrainian regulator issued a resolution to allocate nationwide 5G-suitable spectrum in the 3400MHz-3600MHz range while simultaneously withdrawing an operating permit of FreshTel, but subsequent legal proceedings dragged on for more than three years, culminating in the Supreme Court verdict which cannot be appealed.
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