Telecom companies challenge spectrum pricing

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Telecom companies challenge spectrum pricing

Korea’s three largest mobile carriers have challenged the way the government calculates renewal fees for 3G and 4G LTE wireless network spectrums on Tuesday, saying that the current methodology places an undue burden on telecom operators.  

 
Three carriers — SK Telecom, KT and LG U+ — issued a joint statement to counter the government’s decision to apply the previous auction prices for renewal, which is estimated to be 5.5 trillion won ($4.9 billion), according to the Ministry of Science and ICT.  

 
“If the government was to use the initial auction prices as renewal fees, it should have noted it when the auction was held,” the statement read.  

 
The carriers noted that the government abruptly changed the pricing methodology for the renewal of 310 megahertz of spectrum.  

 
Instead of relying on the previous bid prices, the carriers suggested that the government open new bidding for the spectrum.  

 
The telecom operators went on to note that the current economic value of the spectrum could differ from the past.  

 
“With the passing of time, the value of the spectrum has also declined,” they said, referring to the lowering prices of facial masks during the pandemic as time passes.  

 
BY PARK EUN-JEE   [park.eunjee@joongang.co.kr]

 
 

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