8 May 2013

$A2 billion paid for new spectrum

9:27 am on 8 May 2013

Telstra, Optus and TPG have bought nearly $A2 billion worth of wireless spectrum from the federal government in Australia.

But $A1 billion worth of wireless spectrum made available through an auction by the Australian Communications and Media Authority remains unsold.

Telstra, Optus and TPG all successfully bid for new licences in the auction of wireless spectrum previously allocated to analogue television.

AAP reports Telstra will pay $A1.3 billion for licences in the 700 MHz band and 2.5 GHz band of spectrum, while Optus will pay $A649 million for smaller portions of spectrum in each band.

TPG picked up a section of the 2.5 GHz band for $A13.5 million. Vodafone Hutchison Australia withdrew before the auction took place.

In a statement, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said: "15 MHz paired of the 700 MHz spectrum, worth in the order of $A1 billion, remains in the Commonwealth's hands for now, and we intend to return it to the market in the next two or three years."

AAP reports the licences have a term of 15 years.