OUTRAGE AS OFCOM CONTRACTOR SELLS TAXPAYER FUNDED EQUIPMENT INTO ‘CLEARED’ SPECTRUM
The company appointed by Ofcom to make way for new 4G services in the 800MHz band are selling equipment into the spectrum which taxpayers paid them to clear.
In 2009 Ofcom announced that wireless microphone users would be evicted from the 800MHz band to make way for new mobile broadband services. Following an industry campaign, Save Our Sound UK, which pointed out the damage being done to the British entertainment industry, the UK Government agreed to fund part of the clearance of the band. To qualify for taxpayer funding, Channel 69 equipment had to be surrendered.
This equipment is now being resold back into the band which taxpayers paid to remove it from, by the scheme’s administrator – Equiniti. A significant amount of equipment has already been sold, and Equiniti are now gearing up their operations to release up to 80,000 channels for use in UK spectrum. Only a fraction of the profit from the sale is going to the taxpayer who financed the scheme – the rest goes directly to Equiniti.
The British Entertainment Industry Radio Group (BEIRG) has repeatedly warned Ofcom about the damage that resale of this equipment could cause to manufacturers, wireless microphone users, and taxpayers. An influx of under-priced equipment, which will not be licensable in just over a year, will grossly distort the UK microphone sale and hire market – and will go against the very purpose of the taxpayer funded scheme.
read more here