South African networks get spectrum licence fee holiday for coronavirus lockdown

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) has extended the renewal date of spectrum licences to 30 June 2020.

“In view of the state of national disaster and the current 21-day lockdown to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, ICASA has taken a decision to extend the validity period of existing radio frequency spectrum licences in line with regulation 10 of the Radio Frequency Spectrum Regulations,” the industry regulator said.

In terms of the Regulations, the due date for the renewal of radio frequency spectrum licences is 31 March annually.

Failure to pay the prescribed licence renewal fee by the due date will result in the expiry of the radio frequency spectrum licence immediately on 1 April, which is also the start of ICASA’s new financial year.

ICASA fee increases

Last week, ICASA announced that its licence fees would be increasing from 1 April 2020. This included its radio frequency spectrum licence fees.

All its fee increases were 4.1%, which was the average inflation in South Africa according to the Consumer Price Index from Stats SA.

Radio frequency spectrum licence fees will increase to R2,555 per MHz paired, up from R2,454. The minimum licence fee is R154, up from R148.

The minimum fee for a satellite hub station will increase to R63,865, up from R61,350.

Now read: The easy solution for better Internet access during lockdown – Spectrum

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South African networks get spectrum licence fee holiday for coronavirus lockdown