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Ireland to Sell 3 Additional Fixed Wireless Licenses

Ireland's telecommunications regulator, Etain Doyle (www.odtr.ie), announced on Thursday, competition details for three new wireless licenses to provide fixed wireless access (FWA), in Ireland. This includes two additional broadband licenses and one narrowband license.

The licenses will be awarded using a comparative selection process also known as a "beauty contest". The criteria used to judge the applicants will be tariffs offered, services rendered, coverage, speed of roll out, quality of service and performance guarantees. The results are expected to be announced on March 31, 2001.

Although European telecoms are expressing frustration with the auction processes in various countries, the regulator decided to proceed with this competition following a public consultation. Ireland previously issued 8 FWA licenses, including one broadband license to the former state telecommunications company eircom plc. No company will be permitted to possess more than one license for each spectrum.

" The issuing of additional FWA licenses will facilitate increased competition and choice so that Irish consumers continue to benefit from lower prices and the availability of higher quality services, " stated Doyle in a statement.

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