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Regulator of the Year Award: INDOTEL

Name of the Entry

International tender for 5G network operation nationwide.

Summary of the entry

This is a public bidding process for the granting of the licenses and other authorizations necessary for the provision of carrier, telephony and internet services, through the exploitation of radioelectric frequencies in the 698-806 MHz and 3300-3600 MHz bands throughout the national territory. With this auction, the Dominican Republic seeks to be the second country in the region in a position to assign up to 100 continuous MegaHertz in medium bands, the amount of spectrum recommended to achieve the maximum potential of the 5G network at the moment.

Description of the impact of the project and how it has supported operators to develop 5G

Within the bands identified in the National Frecuency Allocation Plan (PNAF) for IMT is 700 MHz, with a bandwidth of 108 MHz allocated for mobile services (698 to 806 MHz) and 3500 MHz with a bandwidth of 300 MHz allocated to this service (3300-3600 MHz). In particular, the range of 3300-3600 MHz, currently has 160 MHz, up of the 3300 -3460 MHz segment, available to be assigned. Due to its physical characteristics of propagation, the frequencies in low bands, such as 700 MHz, allow to provide significantly greater coverage in urban and rural areas, with better signal quality and better connection speeds in closed places such as buildings. Also, the frequencies in high bands such as 3500 MHz, offer an adequate balance between capacity and propagation, which is why they have a significant potential to serve urban areas with high demand for capacity and speed. Several international studies have shown that by increasing the penetration of broadband has positive impacts on the increase of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), productivity and job creation and is therefore the importance of this national objective and inicative. In the case of the Dominican Republic, despite the progress of recent years where it is reported that more than 75% of the population is an Internet user, there is a lag in the penetration of fixed and mobile broadband, as well as a digital divide between urban and rural areas.There for, access to broadband Internet constitutes a means to promote economic growth and poverty reduction, due to its high impact in productivity by facilitating the adoption of more efficient processes, accelerating the innovation by introducing new applications and services for users. As a result from this, the economic agents of our society would become more competitive by achieving access to new markets, skilled labor, cheaper raw materials, better equipment and services, as well as a larger customer base. In addition, there is evidence showing that telecommunications have been essential to the development of the economy and society during this pandemic state caused by the virus COVID-19.