According to the information memorandum, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has announced the auction of two lots of 100 megahertz in the 3.5 GHz band to support 5G deployment in Nigeria, with a reserve price of US$273.6 million per lot.

The previous 5G spectrum auction took place in December 2021, where MTN and Mafab each acquired a 100 MHz lot of TDD spectrum. Also, applicants for this auction do not necessarily need to be licensed network operators in the country but will be required to obtain a unified access service license (UASL) to be qualified for the 5G license

For now, only MTN has proceeded to the commercial launch of its 5G network, complying with the NCC's initial deadlines. Mafab Communications has not been able to meet the deadline because it has not yet secured its UASL license. The regulator had to grant it an additional five months to secure the license and launch its network.

The new auction is expected to introduce competition in the ultra-broadband segment currently operated by MTN. By 2025, Nigeria's government intends to connect 70% of its population to broadband, which will help the country achieve its ambition. 

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