The Role of HAKOM

In order to achieve a common EU timetable, it is necessary to award the RF spectrum for 5G mobile communications networks.

HAKOM is responsible for planning and awarding of RF spectrum, which in the case of bands for 5G networks also means selecting the most appropriate award method (public call, tender or auction). In addition, HAKOM decides on the conditions to be set for future licenses, which includes, among other things, defining the obligations of covering the geographical area with a given quality of signals and services.

HAKOM conducted a public consultation on the future allocation of 700 MHz, 1500 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz frequency bands, after which it was decided to include 700 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz frequency bands in the next radio spectrum award.
700 MHz can also be used for services of particular importance (emergency services, civil protection, firefighting and similar services).

Within the scope of 5G Working Group, initiated by HAKOM and through the cooperation of all relevant market stakeholders, key elements for successful implementation of 5G in Croatia have been identified, i.e. potential challenges and obstacles have been identified and the necessary solutions and measures are still being worked out to be removed.

The Working Group contributes to creating a more favourable investment climate in the new electronic communication infrastructure and attempts to raise awareness of the importance of 5G for the development of society and the economy of Croatia.

For two years now, HAKOM has been organizing a “5G Day”, which includes representatives of the Croatian economy and the start-up community who use networks and technologies similar to 5G technology, equipment manufacturers and representatives of relevant state institutions and local self-government. The event is organized in order to use technological development as incentive for the development of the economy of Croatia and society as a whole and to inform users about the potential 5G applications in various branches of the economy and society.
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HAKOM conducted a public consultation from 18.10.2019 to 20.1.2020 on the future allocation of 700 MHz, 1500 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz frequency bands, after which it published its views. The next radio spectrum allocation will include 700 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz frequency bands, while other available frequency bands allocated to mobile communications networks will be awarded depending on the market interest and EC recommendations.

Since the interest expressed in these frequency bands is greater than the available resources, the public auction is imposed as the most appropriate procedure for the award. By setting adequate rules and conditions of the auction it is possible to achieve targeted coverage of users and assure investments in areas that specifically want to be covered (islands, rural and mountainous areas, roads, railways, etc.), while the fees are determined only by the market, i.e. by the auction participants offering the price they are willing to pay, with the reserve price set by HAKOM. Depending on the conditions set, the participants may also compete within the tendering procedure over the type and level of the license commitments, which may affect the final amount of the fee for the awarded RF spectrum in the auction. This will certainly be one of the key factors in the planned auction.

A public consultation will be held on the model and parameters of the public auction and the conditions of use of radio spectrum granted, where the interested public will have the opportunity to become acquainted with HAKOM's intentions and to comment. This includes specific obligations such as covering poorly covered areas, roads, railways, national roaming, investments, etc. In accordance with the obligations and interests of the Republic of Croatia, target areas will be determined. Also, in the same procedure it will be decided on the time and dynamics of payment of fees into the state budget.

At the latest during carrying out public consultation on the RF spectrum award procedure, HAKOM will conduct public consultations on radio frequency assignment plans for 700 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz frequency bands, where technical conditions for the use of radio frequencies will be determined, as well as the division of the territory of the Republic of Croatia into the areas for granting licenses for use of the RF spectrum. The licenses to be issued will be technology neutral.

When allocating 700 MHz it is also necessary to take into account the needs and to ensure a sufficient amount of spectrum for the PPDR (Public Protection and Disaster Relief) network, which relates to emergency services, civil protection, firefighting and similar services. Technical realization of the PPDR network should meet specific user requirements for critical and non-critical communications and increase the efficiency of emergency services in performing their tasks.