Regulation Impact Statement Updates

Official website for publishing regulatory impact analysis information for regulatory decisions announced by the Australian Government, COAG and COAG Councils.

26 GHz spectrum re-allocation

Aust Gov
7th November 2019

Independent Review – Department of Communications and the Arts

On 18 October 2019, the Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher, issued a spectrum re-allocation declaration to re‑allocate spectrum (25.1‑27.5 GHz) in the 26 GHz band for spectrum licensing.This declaration is consistent with a spectrum re-allocation recommendation provided by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). ACMA is planning to auction these spectrum licences in early 2021.

The decision to re‑allocate this spectrum follows recent technological developments that saw this band globally recognised as one of the first millimetre (mmWave) bands capable of supporting 5G wireless broadband services.

ACMA undertook public consultation and published several papers before making its 26 GHz re-allocation recommendation to the Minister. These published documents include:

  1. Wireless broadband in the 26 GHz band – Options paper
  2. Future use of the 26 GHz band: Planning decisions and preliminary views
  3. Draft spectrum re‑allocation recommendation for the 26 GHz band in cities and regional centres: Consultation paper  

These documents detail the consultation and planning that ACMA conducted on how to best facilitate the deployment of 5G wireless broadband services in the 26 GHz band.

Consistent with the Government’s Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) requirements, the Department of Communications and the Arts certified that ACMA’s published documents on the 26 GHz band constitute a process and analysis equivalent to a Regulation Impact Statement (RIS).

The Office of Best Practice Regulation (OBPR) does not assess the quality of independent reviews and RIS‑like documents used in lieu of a RIS.

The Department of Communications and the Arts estimates the average annual regulatory costs at zero. The OBPR agreed that, as the costs were less than $2 million per annum, regulatory costs could be self-assessed by the Department.

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