The Italian Communications Regulatory Authority (AGCOM) has approved the rules and procedures for the assignment of 5G frequencies (Resolution No. 231/81/CONS).  

AGCOM is among the first European regulators to establish a set of rules for the allocation of the "pioneer" frequency bands identified at European level for the development of 5G. The Italian Ministry of Economic Development is anticipated to issue the rules for tender soon as the process needs to be completed by September this year.

The frequency bands subject to tender are:

  • 3600-3800 MHz
    • AGCOM will tender two allotments of 80 Mhz and two allotments of 20 MHz (max. cap 100 MHz). The use of this frequency band will allow the deployment of innovative technologies, such as Massive Mimo and beamforming. Coverage obligations for low population density areas (less than 5000 inhabitants) will follow.
  • 694-790 MHz
    • The use of this frequency band will enhance usual mobile service provision, taking also into account tourist areas, transport infrastructures and related nodes. Competition will be improved through partnership agreements and by reserving a portion to a possible new entrant.
  • 26.5-27.5 GHz
    • This frequency band is particularly valuable to mitigate against frequency interference issues. In order to ensure that this band is fully exploited, a sharing model between market players is envisaged. Accordingly, successful tenderers will be able to use other tenderers' frequencies if the latter do not use such frequencies.

Finally, the regulation intends to foster the entrance of new players in the communications value chain, at both the infrastructure and service levels, so as to develop innovative 5G services (such as eEnergy eHealth, smart mobility, IoT etc.).