INDEPENDENT AUDIT OF SPECTRUM HOLDINGS - GOVERNMENT RESPONSE AND  ACTION PLAN
43 Pages
English

INDEPENDENT AUDIT OF SPECTRUM HOLDINGS - GOVERNMENT RESPONSE AND ACTION PLAN

-

Downloading requires you to have access to the YouScribe library
Learn all about the services we offer

Description

INDEPENDENT AUDIT OF SPECTRUM HOLDINGS _________________________ GOVERNMENT RESPONSE AND ACTION PLAN March 2006 _________________________ CONTENTS 1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 2. IMPLEMENTATION PLAN 3. INTRODUCTION 4. GOVERNMENT RESPONSE TO EACH RECOMMENDATION Published by the Cabinet Official Committee on UK Spectrum Strategy (UKSSC) In consultation with the Office of Communications (Ofcom) Government Response to the Independent Audit of Spectrum Holdings Executive Summary 1 The Government welcomes Professor Martin Cave’s report The Independent Audit of Spectrum Holdings, published in December 2005, which reviewed 1the management of radio spectrum in the public sector. The Government agrees with the Audit that there is scope for more effective use of public sector spectrum through the introduction of spectrum trading and increased sharing with other users, and will work with Ofcom to enable this. The Government also supports greater consistency in the application of spectrum pricing across the public sector. 2 In implementing changes to public sector spectrum policy, the Government will ensure that sufficient spectrum remains available for national security, defence and essential public services. We will also seek to minimise harmful interference and ensure continued compliance with international obligations, including international spectrum management. This Government ...

Subjects

Informations

Published by
Reads 15
Language English
                  
1.
2.
3.
4.
INDEPENDENT AUDIT OF SPECTRUM HOLDINGS    _________________________    GOVERNMENT RESPONSE AND ACTION PLAN  March 2006   _________________________  
CONTENTS
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
IMPLEMENTATION PLAN
INTRODUCTION 
GOVERNMENT RESPONSE TO EACH RECOMMENDATION
       Published by the Cabinet Official Committee on UK Spectrum Strategy (UKSSC)  In consultation with the Office of Communications (Ofcom)
 
Government Response to the Independent Audit of Spectrum Holdings
 Executive Summary 1 The Government welcomes Professor Martin Cave’s reportThe Independent Audit of Spectrum Holdings, published in December 2005, which reviewed the management of radio spectrum in the public sector.1 The Government agrees with the Audit that there is scope for more effective use of public sector spectrum through the introduction of spectrum trading and increased sharing with other users, and will work with Ofcom to enable this. The Government also supports greater consistency in the application of spectrum pricing across the public sector. 2 In implementing changes to public sector spectrum policy, the Government will ensure that sufficient spectrum remains available for national security, defence and essential public services. We will also seek to minimise harmful interference and ensure continued compliance with international obligations, including international spectrum management. This Government Response has been prepared in consultation with Ofcom.  Market Mechanisms 3 The Government supports the introduction of market mechanisms into spectrum management in the public sector. This will create new opportunities for public bodies to make more efficient use of their spectrum holdings, by enabling and encouraging trading and increased band sharing. In order to implement this new approach:  March 2006, there will  Frombe a presumption that public bodies will acquire spectrum through the market, with administrative assignment by Ofcom only being made in exceptional cases.  Ofcom will take forward work on defining the spectrum rights of public bodies. Ofcom will aim by the end of 2006 to clarify how RSA can facilitate public sector trading.  departments will submit to HM Treasury, assessments of Government spectrum holdings and specific proposals for release by the end of 2006. This will inform discussions between departments and HM Treasury on targets and budgeting in the 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), with the aim of providing effective and proper incentives.  Government will publish a strategic Forward Look, assessing The current spectrum use and forecasting future needs, in March 2007 and every two years thereafter. The effectiveness of market mechanisms in                                                  1Available at www.spectrumaudit.org.uk
 
- 3 -
 
encouraging more efficient use of spectrum in the public sector will be reviewed in 2012.
Pricing 4 The Government agrees with the Audit that administered incentive pricing (AIP) remains an important tool for promoting efficient use, that it should be applied more consistently, and should more accurately reflect the market value of the spectrum.  The Government supports the principle that pricing for public sector spectrum should be set on a comparable basis to the private sector.  Ofcom has agreed to review the difference in pricing levels between spectrum classed as “fixed” and “mobile” by 2008. The extension of AIP to the 225-400 MHz band and to military radar, and rationalisation of MOD pricing below 3GHz, will be considered in the context of the CSR in 2007.  The Government is committed to paying AIP on its spectrum holdings, and supports Ofcom’s intention to progressively migrate to payment based on spectrum use defined by Recognised Spectrum Access (RSA). Better-defined Government use will improve opportunities for sharing with other users. Band sharing 5 The Government notes the emergence of technologies intended to facilitate more automated sharing of spectrum between users, and supports the Audit’s recommendation that new regulatory and operational opportunities should be further investigated.  The Public Spectrum Safety Test Group (PSSTG) has already initiated the development of a clear and open safety certification regime for spectrum band sharing. PSSTG is carrying out initial assessment work to consider potential  opportunities for commercial applications to share spectrum currently used for radionavigation, radiolocation and military radars in the 2.7-3.4 GHz band, bearing in mind that in the civil maritime sector these also provide a safety of life function. Ministry of Defence 6 The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is the single largest user of spectrum in the UK, using spectrum for communication, radar, sensing and control applications. The MOD already works closely with Ofcom in managing spectrum holdings and will engage fully in the implementation of the Audit’s recommendations.
 
- 4 -  
 
 MOD will contribute to the UKSSC Forward Look strategy in March The 2007, and every two years thereafter. The MOD will report more detailed information on its usage and plans for key bands identified by the Audit. bands where action could be taken and MOD will identify key  The outline specific proposals for these bands by the end of 2006. On the basis of these assessments and the Audit’s band-by-band study, HM Treasury will discuss and set spectrum targets with the MOD during the CSR process in 2007.  The MOD expects to establish its Spectrum Acquisition Authority (SAA) in April 2006 to improve internal co-ordination and management of spectrum requirements, and will report on progress in the UKSSC Forward Look in 2007. Aeronautical 7 Economic incentives such as AIP could be effective in promoting greater efficiency in aeronautical spectrum where there is flexibility to influence choice of technology or service. In many cases, international agreements limit the scope to improve spectrum efficiency, and safety considerations will remain paramount. By the end of 2006, Ofcom will initiate a study to estimate the levels of  aeronautical radar pricing. Subject to public consultation and impact assessment, Ofcom would expect to introduce incentive pricing from 2008.  Thea review, with MOD and Ofcom, of navigation aids CAA will lead including radar and landing systems, to determine whether fewer systems could continue to satisfy the operational requirements. The study will take account of the outcome of WRC-07. The CAA and MOD will work together more closely through two new  sub-groups of the UK Spectrum Strategy Committee (UKSSC) to plan and manage the use of aeronautical spectrum. The CAA also plans to consider the introduction of band sharing in navigation bands, subject to the outcome of the band sharing safety certification process.
Maritime 8 The MCA and Ofcom will, where appropriate and there is scope for UK autonomy, extend AIP to cover navigation and communication systems from 2008 in radar bands, and more slowly for Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS) as new Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) deploy. Safety considerations, including MCA’s capabilities as an emergency service, will remain paramount. The MCA will also consider increased sharing opportunities in the 3 and 9 GHz Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) radio navigation bands.
 
5 --
 
Emergency and Public Safety Services 9 Emergency and public safety services depend on spectrum for effective and efficient communications The Government will not compromise their operational effectiveness. The Public Safety Spectrum Policy Group (PSSPG) will continue to coordinate policy for public safety and emergency spectrum use, and a new Terms of Reference to reflect the Audit’s recommendations will be agreed in 2006. Science Services 10 The Government agrees that principal users should be exposed to the cost of their spectrum use, but will remain aware of others who depend on measurements made in these bands. Ofcom consulted in 2005 on the introduction of RSA for radio astronomy spectrum and has announced its intention to proceed. Fixed Links 11 The Government notes the Audit’s conclusions that it is too early to tell whether a different spectrum management approach is appropriate for fixed links bands. Ofcom plans to work towards an auction for the 1790-1798 MHz band in 2007-08; award further spectrum at 32 GHz in 2006-07; and expects to have information available from the auction of 1452-1492 MHz within this timescale to inform plans for the future management of other spectrum around 1.4/1.5 GHz Band Specific Audit 12 The Government, together with Ofcom, will use the Audit’s band-by band study to prioritise action on pricing, sharing studies, definition of spectrum usage rights and consideration of a third party band manager. The Government, working with Ofcom, will also undertake the necessary preparatory work to enable decisions on specific spectrum bands to be taken, in response to the Audit’s band-by-band recommendations. To deliver this:  will clarify the mechanism for defining spectrum rights by the Ofcom end of 2006, to enable trading or sharing by Crown bodies  will identify key bands and outline specific proposals for Departments action in these bands by the end of 2006. This will include an appraisal of any significant costs involved in implementation, for example, in re-certification, or procuring new equipment.  will address the need for more detailed internal Audits to Departments establish current spectrum use and include consideration to the accommodation of future needs
 
- 6 -
 
 Specific spectrum targets will be discussed and set by departments and HM Treasury in the context of CSR 2007, on the basis of these assessments. 13 Some of the frequency bands in the band-by-band analysis identified in green have already been opened up for commercial use. For example, the 900 MHz band, which was previously exclusively reserved for use by the MOD, is now almost entirely available and used for civil use. The main NATO band at 225-400 MHz has already been opened up to a limited but important extent for digital audio broadcasting (in the lower 5 MHz) and for emergency services mobile radio (2 x 5 MHz at the top). 14 The bands identified as green or amber by the Audit, where there is scope for increased sharing or spectrum release, account for approximately 65% of public sector spectrum. This gives an indication as to the amount of public sector spectrum within which there is scope for action, suggesting that more efficient use can be made within the majority of public sector spectrum. Not all of the green or amber bands will be opened to commercial use: in some cases there will be increased opportunities for sharing with other users, or release of spectrum at the margins of bands. Further work is needed to assess in detail what action is appropriate, and how to take this forward effectively. 15 It is difficult to quantify the total economic benefit of the changes under consideration since this will depend on future commercial decisions by network operators, equipment manufacturers and others, and on choices made by consumers about which products and services to buy. The Government's provisional estimate, based on expected AIP charges, is that it would realise efficiency savings of between £250m and £900m over the next 5 years although this does not take into account the costs incurred to generate these gains. However, the benefits to the wider UK economy can be expected to be considerably greater since there will be more opportunities for increased competition and innovation.
 Programme of work 16 The Audit and this Government response map out a substantial programme of work. The Government, the CAA, MCA and Ofcom will pursue this purposefully and progressively. The Government will report progress every two years from March 2007 in the Forward Look that will be published by UKSSC. The UKSSC will oversee and monitor progress between publications against the implementation plan set out below.
 
- 7 -
 
 2006                2007
 
IMPLEMENTATION PLAN  Ofcomwill aim to clarify how Recognised Spectrum Access (RSA) will operate for Crown bodies, to facilitate trading and sharing.  MODwill identify certain spectrum bands and outline specific proposals for release or sharing in these bands. Further band-by-band analysis will continue in subsequent years.  MODwill provide to HM Treasury an assessment of current and future spectrum requirements and specific proposals for release or sharing, including an appraisal of any significant costs involved in implementation.  UKSSCpresumption that public bodies will acquirewill adopt the spectrum through the market, subject to agreed criteria for exemptions.  Ofcomexpects to publish regulations on the first public sector RSA for radio astronomy by September 2006.  OfcomandCAAseek to address issues in the 590-598 MHzwill band.  Ofcomstudy into pricing levels for aeronauticalwill initiate a radar spectrum in the first half of the year and expects to complete it by early 2007.  CAAwill initiate a review, withMODandOfcom, of navigation aids, including radar and landing systems, by November 2006.  Ofcom, in conjunction withCAA, will review candidate aeronautical bands for the initial application of spectrum pricing.  Ofcom,in conjunction withMCA, will review candidate maritime bands for the initial application of spectrum pricing.  UKSSCwill establish new radar and band sharing subgroups, to better co-ordinate spectrum management.  UKSSCwill agree the criteria for safety authorisation of new band sharing techniques.  UKSSCwill take responsibility for resolving disputes on public sector spectrum pricing levels  MODwill establish the Spectrum Acquisition Authority in April 2006 to improve internal co-ordination of MOD spectrum.  Ofcomwill commission and publish a study examining the market demand for spectrum 
  HM Treasurydiscuss and set specific spectrum targets withwill relevant departments on the basis of the Audit’s band-by-band study, and the assessments provided by departments in 2006. 
- 8 -
 
           From 2008       
 
 HM Treasurywill agree with departments the framework for the treatment of gains from trading or leasing of public sector spectrum.  Ofcomwill work with the relevant Crown bodies to introduce RSA in key spectrum bands as required.  MODwill deliver the first efficiency savings in bands where there are no significant obstacles to release or sharing.  UKSSCexpects to establish a third party band manager to promote commercial access to public sector spectrum holdings  Ofcomexpects to address issues relating to how payments for secondary use should be handled.  Ofcom, in conjunction withMCA, will consult on the initial application of AIP to maritime bands.  Ofcom, in conjunction withCAAandDfT, will consult on proposals for the application of pricing to aeronautical spectrum.  UKSSCwill publish the first Forward Look for public sector spectrum in March 2007.DTIwill co-ordinate the production of the UKSSC Forward Look.  UKSSCwill review progress in implementing changes to public sector spectrum management, as outlined in this response, and report on progress in the Forward Look in March 2007.  Ofcomwill compile and maintain information about public sector spectrum use and tradability within the UK Frequency Authorisation Plan.   OfcomandCAAexpect that, subject to the outcome of consultations, spectrum pricing will be applied in selected aeronautical and maritime navigation bands  OfcomandMCAwill, subject to the outcome of consultations, extend the application of spectrum pricing to selected navigation bands used in the maritime sector.  CAAwill formally report on the review of aeronautical navigation aids, and determine a UK position for international negotiations by June 2009.  Ofcomundertake a review of AIP levels. This willexpects to include the current differential between ‘fixed’ and ‘mobile’ prices.  Ofcomto continue to progress its programme ofexpects spectrum awards and to review options for the 1.4 and 1.5 GHz bands.  UKSSCwill publish the second Forward Look for public sector spectrum in 2009. This will include a report on progress in implementing changes to public sector spectrum management.  Ofcomwill clear with UKSSC, the UK proposals for WRC10 and associated international forums, and set these in the context of
- 9 -  
 
 
 
 
the efficiency savings recommended by the Audit. 
HM Treasurywill commission a review of the impact of market mechanisms on public sector spectrum management to report in 2012.
- 10 -   
 
Chapter 1Introduction 1.1 The radio spectrum is a major resource for communications in the public and private sectors. Its effective management is essential if we are to make the UK the most dynamic and competitive communications market in the world while simultaneously ensuring spectrum is made available for national security, defence, essential public safety and transport services and scientific research applications. 1.2 The Independent Audit of Spectrum Holdings was commissioned by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in his Pre-Budget Report of 2004 to review major spectrum holdings with a view to releasing the maximum amount of spectrum to the market and increasing opportunities for the development of new services. Professor Martin Cave’s report was published alongside the Chancellor’s Pre-Budget Report on 5 December 20052. 1.3 The Audit consulted extensively, and worked closely with the relevant public sector spectrum managers, including the Ministry of Defence, Civil Aviation Authority and Maritime and Coastguard Agency. The Audit Report did not consider broadcasting bands, which were outside the scope of the study. 1.4 The Government would like to express its appreciation to Professor Cave and the Audit team for the comprehensive nature of its report, which makes a total of 55 recommendations, and for its cogent and wide-ranging analysis. 1.5 The Government agrees with the underlying analysis of the Audit that market-based spectrum management tools should play a strong role in making efficient use of a finite and valuable resource. 1.6 The Audit underscores the importance of effective spectrum management in the public sector.  radio spectrum is a finite resource of considerable importance for The national security, transport and public services, but also for the wider economy and future UK competitiveness. Effective management of this resource is crucial if we are to maximise the economic and social benefits of its use. Rapid and unpredictable change is both increasing the importance of spectrum and making its management more challenging.  The Government believes that centrally planned regulation alone cannot continue to meet this challenge. Market-based mechanisms, such as incentive pricing, auctions and trading, can deliver clear benefits by transferring spectrum to the user who values it most. In particular, they allow continuous dynamic adjustment as markets and technology change.  the interests of maximising the economic and social value of the In spectrum, the UK should seek the greatest flexibility in internationally
                                                 2Spectrum Holdings, Professor Martin Cave, December 2005. Available atIndependent Audit of www.spectrumaudit.org.uk  
 
11 --