Sutel approves Movistar and Claro for next spectrum auction

By:
James Pearce
Published on:

Telefonica and America Movil's subsidiaries in Costa Rica have been given permission to bid on 70MHz of 1800MHz, 1900MHz and 2100MHz

Costa Rican regulator Sutel has given permission for America Movil and Telefonica’s subsidiaries to take part in the upcoming spectrum auction for 1800MHz, 1900MHz and 2100MHz spectrum bands.

Telefonica’s Movistar and Claro, part of American Movil, were the only two companies to submit technical offers to take part in the auction, which will see licenses for seven blocks tendered.

Millicom’s Tigo had submitted comments on the bidding process, but opted not to compete for the 70MHz of spectrum, which was left over from an auction in 2010/11. State-owned Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) will also not be involved in the process.

The regulator said it will set a minimum price for each block, with bidders then able to decide how many the wish to bid for. Though Sutel did not disclose initial pricing, it said it will raise the price per block by 20% I subsequent rounds where demand exceeds the offering.

Sutel president Gilbert Camacho claimed the tender would serve to boost competition and improve service quality in the mobile sector. 

“The main objective of the Spectrum tender is to improve the quality of services from the perspective of the user experience, to control the concentration of spectrum and to ensure environmental sustainability,” Sutel said in a statement.