" ITREALMS: NCC MoU with NigComSAT to propel early 5G deployment in Nigeria - ITREALMS

Thursday, May 06, 2021

NCC MoU with NigComSAT to propel early 5G deployment in Nigeria - ITREALMS

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The latest Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and Nigerian Communications Satellite (NigComSat) would propel early Fifth Generation (5G) deployment in the country, reports 
The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta gave this insight at the signing ceremony held in Abuja, saying he was honoured to be part of this historic event.

According to EVC, the MoU would facilitate the release of contiguous bandwidth in one of the most suitable Frequency Spectrum band(s) for early deployment of fifth Generation Network (5G) services in the largest market in sub-Saharan Africa.

He explained that amongst the Frequency Spectrum bands allocated to 5G by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) includes the C-band (3.4GHz - 3.9GHz) which stands out because its balancing point between coverage and capacity provides the perfect environment for 5G connectivity.

“The C-band is most suitable and appropriate for immediate deployment of 5G services taking into consideration availability of device ecosystem with 60-70% of global commercial 5G network deployment currently in the band, thus the importance of this Spectrum for early deployment of 5G services in Nigeria cannot be over emphasized,” he declared.

For optimal 5G service performance, Danbatta pointed out that an average of contiguous 100 MHz of spectrum in the C-band is required by an operator. Stressing that however in Nigeria, only 120 MHz of the band (3.4 – 3.52) GHz is available for mobile services while the remaining 680 MHz (3.52 – 4.2) GHz of the band is used by NigComSat (NG-1R) satellites.

ITREALMS gathered that the Commission initiated negotiation with NIGCOMSAT whom in our estimate could make some adjustment to its satellite operation and release part of its spectrum holding in the band to facilitate the deployment of 5G in Nigeria.

“The impeccable team at NigComSat proved us right,” he asserted.

In addition, he commended the management of the NigComSat under the distinguished leadership of Dr. Abimbola Alale for demonstrating that the interest of the country is paramount to “our organizational or personal interest,” he said.

The two agencies, he said, have been in discussions on how to relocate the operations of NG-1R to the standard C-band 300MHz (3.9GHz – 4.2GHz) potion of the band, which is more suitable in terms of satellite service offering because end-user terminal are cheaper there, while leaving the non-standard C-band 400MHz (3.5GHz – 3.9GHz) portion of the band for 5G use.

“The cost of relocating the NG-1R is expected to be offset from the proceeds of the auction of the 5G Spectrum,” he said, pointing out on the reason the two agencies have developed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) detailing all the aspect of this undertaking.

“We are gathered here today to sign the MOU for further execution. It is my believe that the impact of this decision knows no bounds and will not only strengthen the relationship between both agencies but would also go a long way in making positive impact on the Nigerian economy,” he said.

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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