MoD sells off broadband spectrum header image

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has announced plans to auction off some of its radio spectrum, giving private operators the chance to purchase more frequency for communications.

In the first direct sale of its kind by a government department, the MoD will sell a section of the spectrum it owns below the 15GHz frequency in 2014.

The frequency could be used by companies to support the wider introduction of 4G mobile services, or by fixed-line operators to provide wireless access to broadband connections.

"We hope that the sale will help drive the rollout of new generation networks and universal access to broadband, both of which are vital to the UK's prosperity," said Philip Dunne, minister for defence equipment, support and technology.

A separate auction of spectrum is set to take place in spring next year, with chancellor George Osborne recently revealing that the government expects to raise about £3.5 billion from the sale.

Prospective bidders for new spectrum have already registered their interest with Ofcom.

Posted by Mark Wynn