Saudi Arabia’s Plans For for Unlicensed 6 GHz Access and Spectrum Sharing Praised by DSA

The Communications and Information Technology Commission’s decision to open the complete 5925-7125 MHz band for unlicensed access, will foster innovation and provide last-generation connectivity and digital empowerment in the Kingdom, says Martha Suarez, Dynamic Spectrum Alliance President.

“I want to express the DSA’s unanimous and enthusiastic support for CITC’s decision to allocate new spectrum for emerging wireless technologies such as Wi-Fi 6E. We also celebrate the combination of innovative regulatory approaches that will deliver greater spectrum sharing and flexible access.”

Martha Suarez, DSA President

Being the first country in the EMEA region to open the entire 6 GHz band for license-exempt use bolsters the Kingdom’s position as a driver of innovation. It accelerates global harmonization of this band for license-exempt use, benefitting users in the Kingdom and globally. The DSA believes that the CITC is moving in the right direction in its mission to protect consumers, promote investment and safeguard competition to ensure reliable communications services and innovative digital technologies.

“Allocating new spectrum for emerging wireless technologies will enable many use cases across different industries and verticals to help Saudi-Arabia to build a digital society. CITC is adopting a progressive spectrum policy to meet spectrum demand of this wireless proliferation and enable technologies of the future like 5G, broadband satellite and new generation of WiFi to have fair access to spectrum.”

CITC’s Governor Mohammed Al-Tamimi

Saudi Arabia is the first country in ITU region 1 enabling license-exempt access to the entire 6 GHz band and is a leader country in the region. The decision confirms CITC’s long-term vision, laying the groundwork for early adoption of Wi-Fi 7 in the Kingdom. The standardization process of the next generation of the IEEE 802.11 family standard, 802.11be, is ongoing with progress to be made in early 2021.

“CITC has a holistic vision that outlines the potential of radio spectrum to transform Saudi Arabia into a digital society by enabling different industries. We welcome CITC’s vision about unlicensed access and light licensing approaches. We agree that this last regime should increasingly make use of databases as these provide more flexibility, deliver greater control of the band and provide important insight into usage.”

Martha Suarez, DSA President

DSA agrees with CITC on the fact that spectrum sharing enhances the efficiency of use, and as databases, artificial intelligence and other tools become more capable, new and more effective forms of sharing will open up over the coming years.

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