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URCA changes position to reserve space in 700 MHz frequency for two, not three, cellular operators

 |  March 27, 2012

The Bahamas’ Utilities Regulation & Competition Authority (URCA) has decided to reserve space in the 700 MHz radio frequency spectrum for only two cellular operators. This marks a change from URCA’s position in the draft policy, which was to reserve space for three operators. URCA defended its revised stance by explaining it had weighed the current need for spectrum by non-mobile operators against the future need by a third mobile provider. URCA determined that a third provider would not be legally permissible in the country until 2016. Given the potential obstacles that would need to be surmounted before that date, URCA opted to favor the immediate need for spectrum.

URCA also addressed concerns with Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC)’s allocation of space in the 700 MHz frequency spectrum, given its legal monopoly in the cellular market. URCA responded that the band would allow BTC to offer customers 4G LTE data rates that were six times faster than the current HSPA+ technology rates.

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