London: Tom Phillips, Chief Government and Regulatory Affairs Officer, GSMA, offered the following statement regarding the United Arab Emirates’ decision to allocate the 700MHz and 800MHz (the Digital Dividend) spectrum bands to mobile, maximising spectrum harmonisation within the region and globally:

“The UAE regulator, TRA, has demonstrated outstanding leadership and vision with its decision to allocate new spectrum bands for mobile broadband services, by moving quickly to allocate both the 700MHz and 800MHz bands to mobile. The mobile broadband market in the Arab States is set to increase by 255 per cent by 2017 to 142 million connections, with the potential to generate US$108 billion in GDP between 2015 and 2025. With such clear economic benefits, we hope other markets will follow quickly with similar decisions.

“Combining the 800MHz band plan for Europe, Middle East and Africa with the lower portion of the Asia Pacific (APT) 700MHz band is a significant step forward. Spectrum harmonisation delivers multiple advantages, including generating much-needed economies of scale, facilitating near-global roaming and limiting interference along borders. This will ultimately provide a broader choice of devices and more affordable mobile broadband services to the citizens of the UAE and across the Arab States.”


Notes to Editors
Details of the announcement by the UAE Regulator TRA can be found here

Interview with Tariq Al Awadhi, Executive Director of Spectrum and International Affairs at the TRA on shaping international spectrum policy can be found here:


About the GSMA
The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. Spanning more than 220 countries and territories, the GSMA unites nearly 800 of the world’s mobile operators with more than 230 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organisations in industry sectors such as financial services, healthcare, media, transport and utilities. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Expo. 

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