Bickering continues to delay proceedings

MPs urge haste in 4G spectrum auction

A group of MPs that make up the Commons Culture, Media and Sport committee have urged Ofcom to change the current goal of one 4G mobile broadband provider reaching 95 per cent of the UK to more than one reaching 98 per cent.

The Committee was, however, more critical of British network operators bickering over the terms of the upcoming 4G spectrum auction which has already resulted in an auction delayed much further than most nations in Europe.

"Ofcom has had a very difficult job adjudicating between competing and polarised interests, and we are concerned that constant disagreement and special pleading from the four mobile network operators appears to have further delayed the spectrum auction," Committee Chair John Whittingdale MP according to a BBC report.

Whittingdale called the auction terms "sensible and fair" and warned that further delays would result in the UK "falling further behind in this vital area."

The Committee also expressed concern that network operator Everything Everywhere would be selling off 2G spectrum at a profit, spectrum that was gifted to the company by the state. The EU has demanded the sell-off of some of the spectrum following the merger of T-Mobile and Orange into Everything Everywhere.

"Government and Ofcom should find a way to ensure that at least some of the proceeds are invested for public benefit," said Whittingdale.

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