Namibia: frequency bands allocated to operators will be reviewed every four years

11 May 2022

The Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN) will review its frequency bands every four years, in accordance with the new guidelines of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

These guidelines promote cross-border interoperability and new technologies.

CRAN’S director general, Emilia Nghikembua (pictured), said the regulator “will amend frequency band allocations and regulations as necessary, following the appropriate regulatory processs”. For example, spectrum licensees would be required to migrate to new frequencies following the implementation of a new frequency band plan. The authority will deal with each migration on a case-by-case basis.

This initiative is part of one of the missions of the Communications Regulatory Authority, which is the management of spectrum designed to “facilitate the availability of spectrum to be used as a tool for the development of communication services and access to infrastructure of information technology and communication (ICT).

It comes just weeks after the regulator announced that it will suspend the award of new telecoms licenses between October 1, 2022 and September 30, 2023, so it can assess the level of competition in the Namibian mobile market and determine the level of saturation.

With this initiative, the communications regulator wants to keep up with the latest regulatory trends and technological developments to ensure the efficient use of the limited telecom spectrum resource. “It is essential to ensure interoperability between systems and networks, to facilitate frequency coordination between countries and to establish international systems,” said Nghikembua.

This initiative is also expected to help develop Namibia’s ICT sector. It will contribute to social and economic development and enable governments and people to take advantage of the digital transformation and opportunities presented by the fourth industrial revolution.