ARCEP - Authority for regulation of the electronic communications and postal sectors of the French Republic

07/13/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/17/2017 14:58

Regional digital development - public consultation

Arcep launches a public consultation on the allocation procedures for 3.5 GHz band frequencies, dedicated to superfast wireless systems

Paris, 13 July 2017

Today Arcep is launching a public consultation on the allocation of 3.5 GHz band frequencies for regional digital development purposes.

On 22 June 2017, Arcep published a synopsis of the contributions to the consultation on 'New frequencies for superfast access in the regions, for businesses, 5G and innovation,' which had been launched on 6 January 2017, and thanks to which the Authority was able to ascertain local authorities' high expectations regarding regional digital development.

In this consultation, Arcep had stated that it planned on authorising the use of 40 MHz (3420 - 3460 MHz band) to establish superfast wireless networks, and thereby meet the regions' superfast fixed internet access needs. Arcep had also stated that, in certain parts of the country, the 3410 - 3420 MHz band could also be employed to satisfy these needs.

The purpose of today's public consultation is to implement the guidelines set forth on June 22. Arcep therefore wants to obtain feedback from stakeholders on two draft documents:

- first, a document detailing the allocation procedures for the 3410 - 3460 MHz band;

- second, a draft decision on limiting use of the 3410 - 3460 MHz band in Metropolitan France to the supply of fixed access services.

In light of the contributions it received, Arcep will adopt and submit the decision on limiting use of the 3410 - 3460 MHz band in Metropolitan France to the supply of fixed access services to the Government for approval in September. Once this decision has been approved, Arcep will endeavour to publish a document, also in September, detailing the allocation procedures for the frequencies dedicated to regional digital development, to be able to then proceed with the first allocations before the end of the year.

Once in place, this mechanism will help accelerate superfast rollouts in the regions, in keeping with the Government's stated objectives.

Stakeholders are invited to submit their contributions before 7 September 2017.