Following public consultations held in mid-2003 and again in mid-2004, the Portuguese regulatory authority ANACOM has now reached final conclusions on the way forward for the re-definition of the rights and associated conditions for the use of frequencies for fixed wireless access.
(in Portugal, fixed wireless access systems currently operate in the 3,4-3,8 GHz, 24 GHz, and 28 GHz bands)
ANACOM’s proposals of May 2004 (see previous T-REGS news item) were widely endorsed by the 9 respondents to the latest consultation.
Therefore, ANACOM will now present to the Government a draft of a new regulation (‘portaria’), to re-define the applicable framework, according to the following principles:
1) The existing licensing system for FWA will be terminated, in particular in terms of geographical coverage requirements, but existing operators can continue to operate the base stations they have effectively put in service (8 operators are in this situation).
2) The right of use of frequencies will be withdrawn where operators have not exercised their right to use those frequencies.
3) Nine new geographical zones will be defined.
4) New rights to use frequencies will be made available to existing operators and to new operators.
5) The fixed incumbent operator Portugal Telecom will be allowed to apply for frequencies without the special restrictions that currently apply.
6) It will be permitted to use fixed wireless access frequencies for the core transmission network (in addition to the access network).
7) The frequency fee system (radioelectric taxes) will be modified, resulting in a reduction of the financial burden for operators, and with a weighting system depending on the geographical zone. (proposals from two operators to tailor the fees depending on the commercial success of the operators were rejected).