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ECC reiterates importance of new expert study on UHF frequency band

Date

26 Jun 2013

Sections

InfoSociety
Innovation & Enterprise

Copenhagen, 26 June 2013 – As the spectrum community gathers together in Brussels for Forum Europe's European Spectrum Management Conference, the Electronic Communications Committee (ECC), the expert group responsible for harmonising the efficient use of the radio spectrum across Europe, reiterates its intention to set up a major study on the future use of UHF frequencies, with a special focus on 470-694 MHz, to consider the most effective spectrum management framework for its future use.

Mark Thomas, Director of the ECC's central office, said: "There has been much discussion about the future use of UHF frequencies, particularly in relation to 700 MHz, and there is a lot of technical work still to do."

He added: "The ECC believes that this work on the 700 MHz band should also be taken into account when a detailed analysis is carried out for the band below 694 MHz to gain a deeper understanding of the technical background to the various policy options to ensure those involved in this debate are better informed and better prepared for the longer term."

The ECC expects to complete its study of the UHF frequency band within a year. A new Task Group (TG6) has been established to take this work forward. It is led by ECC Vice-Chairman, Jaime Afonso, of the Portuguese spectrum regulator, ANACOM. 

The meeting at which this decision was taken took place in Toulouse, France, on 18 - 21 June.

Speaking on the same subject after the ECC meeting in Toulouse last week, Eric Fournier, ECC Chairman, said: "The ECC wishes to look beyond a piecemeal approach (‘salami-slicing’) to the use of this prime range of spectrum, and to consider options for a more joined-up strategy, especially for the longer term and below 694 MHz.  A particular challenge for us is that the optimum rate of evolution, as well as the ideal longer term equilibrium, is unlikely to be the same throughout Europe."

You can view the full statement made on 21 June 2013 here.

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Notes to Editors

1. The band 470-862 MHz is allocated to broadcasting in the International Radio Regulations, and the band 790-862 MHz is also allocated for mobile. The 790-862 MHz range has been harmonised for use by mobile (i.e. for wireless broadband) throughout Europe, although a few CEPT countries will retain other existing services (TV, and an aeronautical navigation system) for several years yet.  The frequencies below 790 MHz are mainly used in Europe for broadcasting, with some other uses (e.g. wireless microphones) sharing the spectrum on a secondary basis.

2. The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) decided at WRC-12 that the frequency range 694-790 MHz should also be allocated to mobile services on an equal status to broadcasting.  WRC-15 will also consider making further allocations to mobile.

3. The technical differences between broadcasting and bi-directional mobile networks make it impractical for neighbouring countries to have different types of service for a long distance from their mutual border.

4. The ECC brings together 48 countries to develop common policies and regulations in electronic communications for Europe, and to provide a focal point for information on spectrum use. Its primary objective is to harmonise the efficient use of the radio spectrum, satellite orbits and numbering resources across Europe. Please visit our website for more information: www.cept.org/ecc.

5. The ECC is supported by its central office, the European Communications Office (ECO), based in Copenhagen, Denmark: www.cept.org/eco

6. Follow us on Twitter for updates on our spectrum news @CEPT_ECC.

Contacts:

Jaime Afonso – Jaime.afonso@anacom.pt, tel: +351 21 721 22 40

Mark Thomas – mark.thomas@eco.cept.org, tel: +45 33 89 63 01

Bruno Espinosa – bruno.espinosa@eco.cept.org, tel: +45 33 89 63 06

 

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