LONDON (Reuters) – British telecoms regulator Ofcom stated on Tuesday it might proceed with the sale of latest cellular airwaves after a London court docket denied operator Three permission to mount one other authorized problem to the foundations it had set for the public sale.
Three, the smallest of Britain’s 4 networks, and the most important operator BT’s (BT.L) EE had challenged the extent of cap set by Ofcom on the quantity anybody operator can personal, however each circumstances have been rejected by the High Court in December.
“The Court of Appeal has very firmly rejected Three’s application for permission to appeal on all grounds,” an Ofcom spokesman stated.
“We welcome this decision, and will now press ahead with releasing these important airwaves. This new capacity will allow mobile companies to offer more reliable reception, and to prepare for future 5G services.”
Three, which is owned by Hutchison Telecommunications, wished the cap set at 30 % relatively than the 37 % set by Ofcom.
A Three spokesman stated the company was upset by the ruling, however added the choice to attraction was the fitting one.
“First of all this has not caused any delay to the delivery of 5G services to UK consumers which are not expected to rollout until 2019/20, according to Ofcom,” he stated.
“But more importantly, our appeal is about competition in the UK mobile market and spectrum distribution is the single biggest factor in maintaining a competitive market.”
It stated it nonetheless believed a cap set at 37 % was too excessive if the target was to have a aggressive 4 participant market and it wish to see it decrease sooner or later.
Reporting by Paul Sandle; modifying by Stephen Addison and David Evans