Nigeria’s 5G auction price has risen to $209.4m ($209,497,962.50) as the trio of bidders including MTN Nigeria, Airtel and Mafab Communications battle to claim the two slots of 3.5 GHz spectrum on offer at the fourth round of bidding.

The auction is holding in Abuja.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, flagged-off the auction process being organised by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the country’s telecoms regulator.

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The deployment of 5G will help address Nigeria’s security challenges and expand the window to leverage emerging technologies for development across sectors, said Pantami.


His words: “Things like Things of Big Data, IOT, will be used to figure out security issues. The general benefits of 5G deployment include low latency, and high bandwidth. At the top of our 5G policy the security agencies can leapfrog to solve security issues.

“We are convinced beyond that that it will help our security, help our digital economy march, strengthen our financial sector, etc. We feel that if 5G is deployed in Nigeria, it will support all sectors of our economy.

“Nigeria has the largest digital economy in Africa, largest telecom market, broadband subscribers, telephone subscribers and we hope by 2025 we will have the largest 5G subscribers.”


From $197m to $209 and still rising

For the three bidders, the First Round kicked off at $199,374,000.00 above the reserve price of $197,400.000.00.

The figure rose to $201, 367,740.00 at the Second Round; and further increase to $204, 388,256.10 for Round Three.

Now at $209,497,962.50 for the Fourth Round, Nigeria 5G auction appears to be a replay of the country’s first and highly contested GSM spectrum auction about 20 years ago.


“Today’s auction is momentous in that it will usher Nigeria into the 5G realm,” said Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the NCC, Prof Umar Danbatta.

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