South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) has confirmed that the auction of additional 5G-suitable spectrum will no longer take place this month as planned, amid a continued dispute between operators related to the terms of the frequency sale.
According to Yonhap News Agency, with the spectrum tender having been expected to get underway in February, SK Telecom and KT Corp have continued to complain that smaller rival LG Uplus is at a relative advantage in the auction, as it is claimed it will cost LG Plus less to utilise the frequencies that are being offered. Now, with regards to the delay of the auction process an MSIT official was cited as saying: ‘”The auction will not open in February … It’s true the schedule is being slightly delayed from what we had initially announced.’
As previously reported by CommsUpdate, in December 2021 the MSIT announced it would open bidding for a 20MHz block of spectrum in the 3.5GHz band (3.40GHz-3.42GHz), following a request by LG Uplus, before subsequently confirming the new frequencies would be priced at KRW135.5 billion (USD113 million).
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