Advanced Television

Bank backs CBA proposals

October 9, 2019

Investment bank Morgan Stanley says it expects the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to publish its Final Report and Order on the C-Band Alliance’s (CBA) proposals in November.

The CBA wants to reassign 180 MHz of C-band satellite spectrum and auction off the bandwidth for use by the 5G industry.

Importantly, the bank says the FCC will also specify how the auction should be handled (a public sale, or an auction handled by the CBA itself).

Morgan Stanley estimates this spectrum is worth between $10-30 billion in gross proceeds, payable to the satellite providers if going through a private auction route, to compensate for the economic costs of moving satellite services away from a portion of the band, and with the satellite industry having to supply and install filters on each and every Earth Station receive dish, and fund a fleet of new satellites.

There may also be a voluntary windfall tax on these gross proceeds and some US lawmakers are urging that this tax be significant.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai recently said: “I’m optimistic that later this fall we will vote on in order to make a significant amount of spectrum available in the C-Band for 5G.”

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