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Ofcom to increase mobile operator license fees
Thursday 10 October 2013 11:03:45 by John Hunt

Ofcom has released a consultation on increasing the cost that mobile providers have to pay to use radio spectrum in the 900 MHz and 1800 MHz frequencies which would see a huge rise in the cost on mobile operators. News of this will be expected by mobile operators as the Government instructed Ofcom in 2010 to review these fees in line with market value, and taking into account the sums bid in the recent '4G auctions' for the 800 MHz and 2.6 GHz spectrum.

  Vodafone Telefonica (O2) EE H3G (Three) Total
900 MHz £12.4m £12.4m - - £24.8m
1800 MHz £3.2m £3.2m £24.9m £8.3m £39.7m
Total £15.6m £15.6m £24.9m £8.3m £64.5m
Fees per operator at current rates

Ofcom has analysed other evidence, examining the spectrum auctions in other countries to establish a benchmark value for the cost per MHz that should be levied on the UK operators. Over a 20-year license term the value would be £25m per MHz in the 900MHz range and £15m per MHz in the 1800 MHz range. With some adjustments for tax-benefits and RPI, this comes out at £1.99m and £1.19m per MHz for the 900 and 1800 MHz bands respectively. The table below shows the fees that it is proposed that operators will pay.

  Vodafone Telefonica (O2) EE H3G (Three) Total
900 MHz £69.3m £69.3m - - £138.5m
1800 MHz £13.8m £13.8m £107.1m £35.7m £170.4m
Total £83.1m £83.1m £107.1m £35.7m £308.9m
Proposed revised fees per operator, with EE and H3G figures adjusted for spectrum divestment from EE to H3G.

It is clear from the revised income, £244.4m extra per year, why the government are keen to push these higher charges through which are likely to filter down to consumers as a charge of a few extra pounds a year on the mobile bill. They are proposed to come into effect next year, subject to the consultation.


Posted by Going_Digital over 4 years ago
Another stealth tax, the mobile operators are not exactly going to absorb all the cost themselves they will simply pass it on to customers. With virtually everybody having a mobile phone these days it will be an extra cost for virtually everybody.
Posted by FlappySocks over 4 years ago
Is this an attempt to kill off 2G?
Posted by Chrismb over 4 years ago
What's the point of this? The mobile operators will just pass it on to us in our bills! Ofcom should just give it for free.
Posted by adslmax over 4 years ago
ofcom is unfit purpose - just like ofgem too.
Posted by themanstan over 4 years ago
Just like UKgov...
Posted by djfunkdup over 4 years ago
and most of the staff in my local tesco.....
Posted by djfunkdup over 4 years ago
i mean who puts a 4litre jug of milk on top of a loaf of bread..cummon..
Posted by pcoventry76 over 4 years ago
that'll be a lame arse customer who didn't want it but didn't want to put it back either.
Posted by djfunkdup over 4 years ago
No actually i am referring to the staff member at the checkout that insisted on packing my bags the extent she snatched the bags out my hand lol..yea i am a man i can't pack bags lol..she then proceeded to place a 4litre jug of milk on top of a tiger loaf fresh out the bakery :)Priceless :)
Posted by djfunkdup over 4 years ago
Ok back on track and lets not get distracted .... Whats the point here ?
Posted by vicdupreez over 4 years ago
The point is that the UK government is NOT our friend and is screwing us for every single penny. I for one is sick of this... I did not vote for them... In fact, I had no opportunity to vote for them... I am stuck with the shower of NI ones... The one more crooked as the other...
Posted by vicdupreez over 4 years ago
than instead of as of course... I had written something else, that I fear would have been modded away :D.
Posted by pcoventry76 over 4 years ago
some of the figures the BBC have ARE shocking - for instance 3 from 8.8 to 63Million!? No wonder they are all squealing, t's like your bill coming through quadrupled.
Posted by otester over 4 years ago
Rather pointless trying to tax businesses, just ends up on the people.
Posted by ptm101 over 4 years ago
I think it's ironic that the networks are having their fees increased. I wonder if the Government sold it to them as a fixed price contract!
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