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MVNO Europe welcomes the Portuguese National Communications Authority’s (ANACOM) regulation establishing the conditions for accessing the spectrum in the 700 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2.1 GHz, 2.6 GHz and 3.6 GHz bands, approved on 30 October 2020. MVNO Europe believes that these rules will promote competition for mobile and wireless communications, including 5G, and enable greater choice and quality of service.

MVNO Europe has responded to the consultation on this regulation and is glad to welcome the final act establishing the conditions for accessing the spectrum in the 700 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2.1 GHz, 2.6 GHz and 3.6 GHz bands. MVNO Europe welcomes, in particular, obligations placed on winners of rights to the use of frequencies in the 700 MHz band (2 x 10 MHz), or at least 50 MHz in the 3.6 GHz band, allowing access to their network under non-discriminatory conditions. This regulatory model will enable Virtual Mobile Network Operators (MVNOs), including light MVNOs and full MVNOs, to provide electronic communication services to end-users that are equivalent to those that the mobile network operators offer to their own customers. More importantly, the new rules will open the market to innovation, technologies and business models that can dramatically boost competition and consumers’ choice for 5G, so as to support growth and investments for the entire sector.

MVNO Europe would like to stress that such rules are particularly beneficial for Portugal, as they will enable the national market to accommodate MVNOs that will effectively serve the Portuguese society and businesses with agile, tailored solutions. MVNO Europe believes that these conditions are crucial to guarantee a successful digitalisation of the Portuguese economy.

Our association would like to express the hope that the network access obligation (which applies only to a sub-set of frequency bands) is a stepping stone towards a general obligation for wholesale access for MVNOs in the future applicable to all frequency bands.

The regulation of ANACOM also establishes the spectrum reserved for new market entrants via conditions ensuring that new entrants can benefit from national roaming on networks owned by the incumbent operators.

Europe’s MVNO association considers that opening up possibilities for network access is beneficial for consumers, SMEs, large businesses, public administrations, and the telecommunications market itself. FInally, setting up conditions that enable new entrants to establish themselves on the market leads to greater innovation, better quality of service and choice for consumers. This is an exciting new chapter for the telecommunications sector and it will benefit the Portuguese economy as a whole.