South Africa’s telecom regulator (Icasa) has published a Draft Radio Frequency Spectrum Assignment Plans (RFSAPs) for specific radio communications systems for public consultation.
According to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), the assignment plans have been published for the following frequency bands: 335.4MHz to 380MHz, 380MHz to 399.9MHz, 406.1MHz to 410MHz, 410MHz to 430MHz, 440MHz to 450MHz, 1 518MHz to 1 525MHz and 156.8375MHz to 174MHz.
BMA understands that these draft RFSAPs of specific radio communications systems aim to update and improve the usage of non-International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT) radio frequency spectrum in certain priority bands, in terms of section 34(16) of the Electronic Communications Act (ECA) No 36 of 2005.
Earlier this year, the regulator published an information memorandum indicating the authority’s intention to start the second phase of the licensing process and make radio frequency spectrum available to prospective licensees to provide mobile broadband wireless access services in the low and mid radio frequency bands.
Icasa said the purpose of the notice was to solicit views from interested stakeholders regarding the IMT radio frequency spectrum bands to be considered by the authority during the second phase of the IMT licensing process. The telecoms regulator expects to conclude this process by March 2023.
The regulator indicated that Cell C, Liquid Intelligent Technologies, MTN, Rain, Telkom and Vodacom responded to the invitation to apply and are qualified to participate in the licensing process.
In a statement, Icasa explained that the migration plans set out in the draft RFSAPs cover frequency bands allocated to various radio communication services and identified for the deployment of specific applications of technologies, which are assigned on a technology-neutral basis.
It explains that each draft plan details the requirements for using a frequency band following the allocation and other information in the National Radio Frequency Plan, Gazette No 46088.
Yolisa Kedama, chairperson of the ICASA Council Committee responsible for developing these draft RFSAPs, said, “Various developments have taken place since the original development of the Radio Frequency Migration Plans of 2013 and 2019, and South Africans have given us their support to ensure that spectrum – a scarce national resource – benefits South Africa, its citizens, and its socio-economic development in many areas and multiple ways.”