Minister of Communications, Dina Pule, aims to provide the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) with a policy direction for the assignment of high demand spectrum in May 2012.
South Africa’s mobile network operators have been clamouring for the assignment of spectrum in the 800MHz and 2.6GHz bands, saying that the roll-out of high speed mobile broadband technologies such as LTE depends on it.
ICASA issued an invitation to apply for frequencies in these bands last year, but have been waiting for a policy direction from the Department of Communications before the process could proceed.
Pule admitted that they could probably have finalised the policy direction in April 2012 after receiving inputs from the public and industry, but said that the various projects on the DoC’s plate has them stretched thin.
“Most of the time we had, we had to spend on arranging this [National Integrated ICT Policy colloquium],” Pule said.
This is not taking into account the DoC’s project for migrating from analogue to digital broadcasting, or the policy on the scheme of ownership, Pule said.