Administration to Create National Spectrum Policy to Jumpstart 5G

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The White House issued a Presidential Memorandum on spectrum policy Thursday that directs government agencies to take several actions to further deployment of 5G wireless networks.

It directs the Secretary of Commerce to work with federal agencies and industry stakeholders to develop a long term, comprehensive national spectrum strategy, with the goal of maintaining American leadership in wireless networks, whether 5G or any future technology. The memo builds on an administration meeting earlier this month organized by the White House National Economic Council that brought together 150 stakeholders from government, industry, and academia, to discuss jump-starting 5G technology, Inside Towers reported.

The Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will work with members of a new Spectrum Strategy Task Force in a multiyear effort to develop and implement the national approach, according to NTIA Administrator David Redl. “The strategy will be informed by examinations of spectrum use, and will help policymakers meet our needs both now and in the future. It will also help align research, development, testing and evaluation efforts,” he said in a blog post.

The Presidential Memorandum also revokes two previous spectrum policy memorandums, established during the Obama Administration.

Industry reaction was effusive. WIA President and CEO Jonathan Adelstein was one of the participants in the White House meeting earlier this month. He praised Thursday’s announcement, saying the administration demonstrated its vision once again to maintain America’s leadership in wireless innovation. The memorandum signed by the President to make more spectrum available for 5G deployment will spur greater economic growth and jobs, not just in the wireless industry, but nearly every sector of the economy.”

CTIA President/CEO Meredith Attwell Baker, commended the administration “for recognizing the importance of establishing a national spectrum strategy.  “With the right approach based on licensed wireless spectrum, America’s wireless carriers will invest hundreds of billions of dollars and create millions of jobs to deploy next-generation networks and win the global 5G race.”

October 26, 2018