The European Commission (EC) announced it will harmonise spectrum in the 3.6GHz band for 5G, a move designed to boost deployment of the technology in the continent.
In a statement, the EC said the move will enable member states to use the frequency band for 5G by 31 December 2020, adhering to rules set out in the EU’s new Electronic Communications Code, which was cleared in December 2018.
The Commission explained the band has been harmonised for wireless broadband services in the union since 2008, “however its use has been low and only a limited number of licences” had been issued.
It has now amended technical conditions to “make them 5G-ready, as the 3.6GHz band has been identified as the primary pioneer band for 5G in the EU”.
However, it added the 3.6GHz band has no exclusive mandate to be used for 5G, and the decision to harmonise the band was based on the principle outlined in the code of ensuring “technology and service neutrality”.
The progress of 5G will also be driven by two pioneer bands (700MHz and 26GHz), as well as further spectrum in existing EU harmonised bands below 6GHz and new spectrum in mmWave.
New code to boost 5G roll-out
The EC said it decided to harmonise the band for 5G after receiving positive feedback from member states that are part of its Radio Spectrum Committee.
Once the Electronic Communications Code comes into force, “radio spectrum will be assigned and coordinated even better at EU level than at the moment so that Europe can become a leader in the rollout of 5G networks”, the EC said.
The move will be complemented by similar harmonisation initiatives in the 26GHz and 700MHz bands, which are ongoing.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back