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Topic # 118978 15-May-2013 17:12
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The government has announced plans to auction the ‘digital dividend’ 700 MHz radio spectrum later this year. The 700 MHz band is the spectrum freed up by the switchover to digital television. We are now consulting on plans for the auction. Documents for consultation are available below. The government has previously announced that:
  • The 700 MHz band will be allocated by competitive auction, as management rights commencing 1 January 2014 and expiring 28 November 2031
  • New Zealand will adopt the ‘APT Band Plan’ for the 700 MHz band, consisting of 45 MHz paired. This will be subdivided into 9 blocks for allocation, each consisting of 5 MHz paired
  • The auction will be subject to acquisition limits (or ‘spectrum caps’) of 2x15 MHz, which may be relaxed to 2x20 MHz during the auction depending on demand
  • Successful bidders will be subject to both implementation requirements for spectrum purchased and a broader obligation to extend mobile cellular coverage.
The Government is now consulting on the auction format and implementation requirements, and a few other matters.

The reserve price for the auction is a decision that will be announced by the government closer to the auction, and it does not form part of this consultation. The government is aiming to provide two months’ notice of the reserve price before the auction.

Full details on the consultation can be found here on the Radio Spectrum Management website

This profile has been set up by MBIE's Radio Spectrum Policy & Planning team. For any specific questions, please contact us on 0508 RSM INFO or visit us at

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1984 posts

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  Reply # 821553 18-May-2013 12:10
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Government should allocate some of the spectrum for emergency services before the auction, hopefully prevent an oversupply as happened in Australia where some of the 700Mhz spectrum was passed in without a buyer.. Seems theres more demand for higher bandwidth spectrum between 2Ghz and 3Ghz that can be used for fixed wireless and mobile data backhaul.

Qualified in business, certified in fibre, stuck in copper, have to keep going  ^_^

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