On November 4, 2020 PTA revealed its new report on “rolling spectrum strategy 2020-2023” to revise the spectrum allocation strategies to meet the need of advancement in mobile technology and data utilization.
The report titled as “Rolling Spectrum Strategy 220-2023” claims to assist Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication, PTA and Frequency Allocation Board (FAB) to map out the spectrum strategy for next three years. the report by PTA has been approved by government to fulfill requirements for faster network speed. International interest has also been taken into consideration while making the report and it is also guideline for network operators for future investments and planning.
The report discusses allocation of C-band (3.6-4.2 Ghz) and suggest cost-effective analysis for the deployment of 5G.The report encourages PTA, FAB, MoIT along with SPARCO to make cost-effective analysis as many countries have opted for C-band for 5G deployment and any others are making arrangements to do so.
The reports discusses the allocation of band for 5G. It says 700 Mhz band is crucial in terms of propagation and can be used to extend coverage area in rural regions in country. Report also mentions other bands including 2500 Mhz, 3400 to 3600 Mhz and 1800 in regards to 5G deployment band as mobiles network operators also applied with PTA and FAB to conduct trials for 5G. 1800 MHz band is used in many countries for deployment of LTE services. In many countries 2G is no longer in existence while in Pakistan 2G still operates.
Additional spectrum is required by our country in order to make its place among countries to early deploy 5G. Mobile usage has been drastically increased in past few years and a higher growth is shown in 2018 to 2020.the report suggest that the country should aim to have 400 additional MHz by 2021 for planning purposes.
For 5G spectrum a new pricing plan AIP is suggested by government for the auction. The current pricing plan ASAF will continue its term till market-based pricing formula comes in place. AIP coupled with revised ASAF schemes will be applied after finalization.