ANCOM Admitted Both Bids for Digital TV Multiplexes
The auction commission announced that both companies which submitted bids within the procedure for awarding the digital television multiplexes – i.e. RCS & RDS S.A. and the National Broadcasting Company – were admitted to the next stage. Upon analysing the application files, the auction commission assessed that these observe all the qualification criteria.
The participants in the procedure may submit complaints with regard to the commission’s decision by 19 May 2014. The auction commission is to announce the scheduling of the primary bid rounds (where the demand exceeds the offer) by 22 May 2014.
ANCOM auctions out 5 multiplexes, four in UHF and one in VHF, in DVB-T2 standard. The first multiplex in UHF (MUX 1) will be used to broadcast free-to-air, under transparent, competitive and non-discriminatory conditions, the public and private television stations that are currently broadcast in analogue terrestrial system, in accordance with the provisions of the Audiovisual Law.
Moreover, according to the Strategy elaborated by the Ministry of Information Society, this multiplex will have to ensure a coverage, in fixed reception, of 90% of the population and 80% of the territory by 31 December 2016, as the only multiplex, out of the five available, bearing such coverage obligations. For the other multiplexes (MUX 2, MUX 3, MUX 4 and MUX 5), the operators will have the obligation to launch in operation - by 1 May 2017 - at least 36 emission stations for each of the networks corresponding to these multiplexes, installed one in each allocation area.
All the licences will be granted for a 10-year period and will enter into force starting 17 June 2015. The winners will have the obligation to pay the licence fee no later than 90 calendar days after the result is announced.
In Romania, the digital switch-over will be completed by 17 June 2015, according to the 2006 Geneva Agreement signed by Romania and to the strategy approved by the Government. On 17 June 2015, the analogue terrestrial broadcasting will be switched off and replaced by the digital terrestrial broadcasting of radio and TV programmes and related multimedia services.