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Satnews Daily
October 29th, 2019

Forrester Reports: The C-Band Alliance has Eutelsat's Support... but not Membership

Chris Forrester.

Journalist Chris Forrester, in a posting at the Advanced Television infosite, reports that Eutelsat, in a formal filing to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has stated the company is in favor of the C-Band Alliance – eventually – freeing up 300 MHz of spectrum over the U.S. for 5G’s usage.

Julie Burguburu, Eutelsat’s group general counsel, and Wladimir Bocquet, director of regulatory affairs, spectrum management and policy at Eutelsat, also said the satellite operator strongly supported a ‘market-based’ solution to an auction of the spectrum, and was not in favor of an FCC-operated auction.

However, Eutelsat said that reclaiming any of the band for 5G would constitute a fundamental change to satellite operator authorizations because it would render useless satellite transponders using reallocated frequencies to provide service and would result in a deprivation of substantial investment in satellites and transponders.

Eutelsat’s meeting with the FCC and its subsequent filing stressed that it wanted the FCC to be aware of the costs likely to fall upon the C-Band Alliance and itself (Eutelsat is currently not a member of the Alliance) and to permit and reimburse those costs to the satellite players prior to any cash being handed over to the US Treasury as part of the ‘windfall’ profits likely to accrue to the Alliance and Eutelsat.

Eutelsat’s filing stated, “[The FCC] should provide all satellite industry stakeholders with appropriate compensation and sufficient incentives to facilitate a rapid, consensus-driven transition of this spectrum and minimize the risk of litigation and delay.