National 5G Plans and Strategies

Consultations on 5G spectrum, July 2017-February 2018

5G Strategy for Austria, April 2018

All MNOs started 5G trials.


RTR consulted three times on 5G spectrum between July 2017 and February 2018, finally opting for a SCA on 3.4-3.6 GHz bands scheduled in February 2019.

The Austrian Government set up a steering group for 5G in February 2017. The “5G strategy for Austria” document was approved in April 2018.

The document defines three phases:

  • Pre-commercial 5G tests are expected to be held during the first phase by mid-2018
  • By year-end 2020, nationwide availability of 100 Mbps connections should be almost reached. This creates the basis for a nationwide expansion of 5G. At the same time, the market launch of 5G in all provincial capitals should take place.
  • In Phase 3, 5G should be accessible across the main traffic roads by year-end 2023, followed by nationwide coverage two years later.

It lists 24 actions in terms of spectrum, funding, research…, translating into ten concrete measures for 5G applications.

Strategy to be further defined. Further trials to come

Upcoming 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum auctions.

5G border corridor Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia

In July 2018, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia signed an agreement to develop an experimental 5G cross-border corridor (Thessaloniki – Sofia – Belgrade) that will test autonomous vehicles.

Strategy for Broadband Development in Croatia 2016-2020

The Strategy for Broadband Developmentin Croatia for 2016-2020 was adopted in July 2016. It aims at achieving full broadband deployment by a technology neutral approach. The estimated budget for the implementation of the Strategy measures is circa 770 MEUR.

A round table on “introduction of the 5G network in Croatia” was held in May 2018.

Cyprus Broadband Plan 2016-2020

In 2016, the Cyprus Broadband Plan 2016-2020 was published and covers broadband action plans and strategic objectives for 2016-2020.

National Plan for the Development of Next Generation Networks 2016-2020

3.7 GHz spectrum auctioned off – Spectrum auctions in the 700 MHz and 3.5 GHz frequencies scheduled for 2019

The Government of the Czech Republic adopted the National Plan for the Development of Next Generation Networks in October 2016.

CTU auctioned off 3.7 GHz spectrum in 2017 to four bidders, including two new players.

Action plan dated 2018

An action plan has been defined early in 2018. It has to be approved by the Minister before year-end 2018.

Early award of trial licenses to a large number of companies (October 2015-October 2017)

3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum assigned to the three players in place in September 2018 for 78 million EUR.

Elisa, first 5G network in Europe launched in June 2018?

5G Test Network Finland is a consortium of industrial partners (vendors, including Nokia, MNOs including Telia and Elisa, FICORA, Finnish universities and research institutes including Aalto, Oulu, Turku, VTT…) aiming at providing the best and most appealing 5G test network environment and ecosystem.

Consultation on 5G, 2016

Trials licenses and trial cities, 2017

5G pilot window, Jan. 2018

Provision of mid-band spectrum for trials in selected cities.

Ongoing discussions and study to open up 3.4-3.8 GHz and 26 GHz spectrum to 5G.

5G initiatives

The 5G road began in 2016 when ARCEP launched a public consultation on 5G. The process accelerated in 2017 when ARCEP consulted on its 5G roadmap and awarded trial licences.

  • In March 2017, ARCEP published a report in “5G: Issues and Challenges”
  • In January 2017, ARCEP launched a public consultation on “New frequencies for the regions, businesses 5G and innovation”.
  • 5G trial authorisation in Lille, Douai, Bordeaux and Lyon in February 2018
  • Creation of a 5G pilot window  in January 2018. ARCEP opened a 5G pilot window for assigning frequencies to stakeholders wanting to perform full-scale 5G pilot trials (ports, hospitals, connected roadways…).
  • On May 22nd, 2018, ARCEP launched a public consultation on making the pioneer 26 GHz band available to kick-start 5G rollouts. It ran until 18 June 2018.
  • 5G trial authorisation in Marseille (Orange), Bordeaux ( Bouygues Telecom), Nantes and Toulouse (SFR)
  • Mid-July 2018, ARCEP disclosed the French 5G roadmap and announced the launch of four priority areas:
    1-Free up and allocate 5G spectrum; ARCEP is currently working hard on future connectivity needs and on freeing-up and awarding 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum
    2-Facilitate development of new uses and applications
    3-Support deployment of new infrastructures
    4-Ensure transparency and discussion on 5G deployments and on public exposure
  • A public consultation on the 1.5 GHz band is expected during summer 2018.
  • A public consultation on award procedures, procedures sequencing and on requirements is scheduled for October 2018.
  • The work on best practices in terms of 5G deployment is to begin in Autumn 2018.
  • In H2 2018, discussions are organised on verticals (connected vehicle, industry 4.0).
  • Live scale tests are awaited for early 2019.
  • In the first half 2019, the Government expects to organise a major event on 5G.
  • The call for applications is scheduled for the second half 2019.
5G timeline in France
Source: IDATE DigiWorld, as of 17 July 2018

Other public initiatives

The other public initiatives aim to create appropriate ecosystem in the country to create a dynamic buoyant ecosystem favorable to innovation:

  • The initiative “La French tech”
  • The initiative “France Très Haut Débit” (Optic Fiber)
  • The programme “Nouvelle France Industrielle” (New Industrial France) created in October 2013 by French government to boost productivity and investments in 34 industrial sectors. The initial budget of 3.7 billion EUR. The programme gathers industrial players, public institutions, competition committees, operators, and well-established research organizations for 13 priority actionswhere fiber broadband and 5G are key elements.

“5G for Germany”, Autumn 2016

5G spectrum roadmap, 2018

5G initiatives

The Bundesnetzagentur published its “Frequency Kompass” in July 2016 in a view to identify areas for regulatory action on spectrum for 5G. More detailed Points of Orientation were published in December 2016.

The Government launched in Autumn 2016 its “5G Initiative for Germany”. In a paper released in September 2017, the Federal Government describes the national 5G strategy (context, actions, rollouts) over the period to 2025. It defines five field of actions, key milestones and allocates 80 MEUR to 5G research initiatives in 5G research centres:

5G strategy in 5 steps
Source: The Federal Government, 5G Strategy for Germany, 2017
Key milestones of 5G strategy for Germany
Source: The Federal Government, 5G Strategy for Germany, as at July 2017
5G research centers in Germany
Source: The Federal Government, 5G Strategy for Germany, as at July 2017

Based on the submitted views, the German NRA released key elements and launched a formal demand for nationwide assignments in the 2 GHz and 3.6 GHz bands in June 2017.

In January 2018, the German NRA released a draft consultation setting out that scarce spectrum in the 2 and 3.6 GHz bands would be auctioned. Decisions I and II were published in May 2018.

  • In the 2 GHz band, 2×40 MHz will be made available as from 1st, January 2021. An additional 2×20 MHz will be available as from 1stJanuary 2026.
  • In the 3.6 GHz band (3.4-3.7 GHz), some of the spectrum is assigned de facto on a nationwide basis (until 2021/2022) will be available as from 1stJanuary 2022 (earlier stage as from 2019). Other public initiatives

Award conditions and auctions rules will be defined by the end of 2018.

5G spectrum auctions could be held in early 2019.

5G timeline in Germany
Source: IDATE DigiWorld, as of 17 July 2018

Upcoming trial licences in 3.4-3.8 GHz frequencies with award of licences in Q4 2019

No major trials to date

5G cross-border corridor (Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia)

EETT expects to see 5G trials using upcoming trial licences.

EETT expects to award 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum in Q4 2019.

In July 2018, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia signed an agreement to develop an experimental 5G cross-border corridor (Thessaloniki – Sofia – Belgrade) that will test autonomous vehicles.

“Digital Success Programme 2.0”. Strategic study.

European 5G hub for 5G

In June 2016, NMHH auctioned off 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum to Vodafone and Digi.

In July 2017, the domestic Government stated three major objectives for Hungary in its “Digital Success Programme 2.0”. Strategic study.

  • Hungary to become a European hub for 5G developments by 2018
  • Hungary to play a leading regional role in testing applications based on 5G technology
  • Hungary to be among the first to adopt 5G technology after 2020.

The 5G coalition with up to 50 Hungarian government institutions, companies business chambers, universities, research institutes and professional and civic organisations was formed mid-June 2017. The 5G Coalition set goals including drawing up a 5G development strategy and creating a testing environment to give Hungary a say in setting global 5G standards, aiming for the nation to become an early 5G adopter from 2020.

3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum has already been auctioned in 2017. Licenses are expected to start in January 2019.

5G for Italy, 2016, 5G strategy, pushed by TIM, around identified cities and application areas.

Trial licenses and trial cities, mid-2017

Bari-Matera plan, 2017

700 MHz, 3.6-3.8 GHz, 26 GHz spectrum auctions, September-October 2018


The Italian 5G strategy kick-started late in 2016 when the domestic NRA announced the start of a fact-finding survey for the development of mobile and wireless systems towards the 5G and the utilization of the spectrum above 6GHz.

In March 2017, the Government selected five 5G trial cities, including Milan (Vodafone), Prato (Wind Tre-Open Fiber), L’Aquila (Wind Tre-Open Fiber), Bari and Matera (Telecom Italia-Fastweb-Huawei Technologies), that will use 100 MHz of 3.6-3.8 GHz spectrum. Provisional licences are valid from September 2017 to 2020.


At year-end 2017, the “Bari-Matera plan” involving MNOs, cities, research centers and equipment vendors was unveiled and began. The 60 MEUR over four years (2018-2021) plan gathers 55 partners including seven universities and research centers, public interest communities, vertical leaders, start-ups and telecom players (TIM, Fastweb, Huawei). The plan focuses on ten application areas including media/virtual reality, smart port, smart city, smart agriculture, public safety, industry 4.0, health 5.0, road safety, tourism and culture, and environmental monitoring over 70 use cases.

In September-October 2018, the NRA auctioned 60 MHz of 700 MHz spectrum for 2 billion EUR, 200 MHz of 3.6-3.8 GHz spectrum for 4 billion EUR and 1,000 MHz of 26 GHz for 167 million EUR.

5G timeline in Italy
Source: IDATE DigiWorld, as of 17 July 2018

SRPK auctioned off 100 MHz of 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum in November 2017.

Two public consultations have been launched on spectrum for 5G to date.

In February 2017, the MCA revised its test and trial-licensing regime to further support the carriage of technology trials such as 5G and IoT. In November 2017, the MCA released an update of its strategy for 2018-2020. Main tasks include:

  • Awarding 800 MHz and continuing process to clear 700 MHz band.
  • Publishing and commencing implementation of the National Spectrum Management Strategy.
  • Continuing scoping work on spectrum earmarked for 5G. nManaging information as the means to promote competition.
  • Continue making the case for assumption of ex-post competition regulation powers.
  • Maintaining the compliance framework set at safeguarding a competitive environment

In June 2018, the MCA released the National Roadmap for the UHF band between 470-790 MHz. The 700 MHz band will be made available for commercial WBB mobile services as from June 2021. The roadmap follows a public consultation held between April 23rdand May 22nd, 2018.

A multi-band spectrum auction is scheduled for 2020.

5G Strategy for Poland, Jan. 2018

5G spectrum consultation, July 2018

A few trials to date


In January 2018, the Ministry of Digital Affairs opened a public consultation on the “5G strategy for Poland”until 11 February 2018. According to the document, Poland will launch 5G in 2020 with 700 MHz frequencies in at least one Polish city by year-end and transport routes will be covered by 2025. Frequencies in the 3.4-3.8 GHz and 26 GHz bands will be allocated in 2021. The 5G strategy for Poland steered by the Ministry of Digital Affairs will be funded by public and community funds until 2023. The Ministry of Digital Affairs will allocated 10-15 MPLN to digitalization until 2023. The Ministry aims at easing permission for installing parts of the networks (masts e.g.) and restrictions on electromagnetic emissions.

In July 2018, UKE launched a consultation on frequencies for 5G covering 700 MHz, 3.4-3.6 GHz, 3.6-3.8 GHz and 26 GHz bands. It proposes the sale of spectrum in these bands. Parts of the bands are currently used for telecom and TV services. Uke considers reorganization and reallocation in all bands.

A public consultation on spectrum for 5G was released between March and April 2018.

ANCOM launched a public consultation on 5G spectrum between May and June 2018.

In April 2017, the regulator launched a public consultation on 26 GHz frequencies.

In January 2017, the Slovenian Government and AKOS called for project applications for testing 5G. In the call, trial licenses in 3.4-3.8 GHz frequencies were proposed.

In July 2017, a consortium on PPDR issues (5G PPDR) was created. The following organizations are participating in the initiative: Telekom Slovenije, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Iskratel, Ericsson, Ministry of Internal Affairs – Police, the Ministry of Defence, Administration for Civil Protection and Disaster Relief, The Information Society Directorate of the Ministry of Public Administration, and AKOS.

Slovenia has launched a public consultation for the allocation of spectrum in the 700 MHz band for 4G and 5G services.

Early 5G 3.4-3.6 GHz spectrum allocation process, 2016

3.6-3.8 GHz auction ended July 2018

5G National Plan 2018-2020 – 5G Observatory in Barcelona, July 2017 consultation, release in 2018

The 5G process in Spain started in July 2017 when the Government opened a public consultation about the 5G National Plan consisting of 25 questions.

The 5G National plan 2018-2020 aims at “promoting the development and deployment of 5G technology” via the auction of spectrum in the 1.5GHz and the 3.6GHz bands in early 2018,  and at “developing their infrastructures and telecommunications networks with a 5G platform”.

The Spanish government has allocated 1 MEUR to create a national 5G observatory in Barcelona, part of a project designed to boost the candidature of Barcelona as the European capital of 5G technological innovation. The observatory is part of the “5GBarcelona” joint initiative of the regional government of Catalonia with Barcelona City Hall, the Mobile World Capital Barcelona Foundation, the i2CAT Foundation, the CTTC (Centre Technologic de Telecommunication’s de Catalunya), Atos and the UPC (Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya).

5GBarcelona will develop a European 5G digital hub based on an open experimental infrastructure in the metropolitan area for validating 5G technologies and services. It will be an open innovation environment based on the collaboration between public and private institutions that will harmonize the ecosystem generated by the Mobile World Congress (MWC) and other technology fairs held in Barcelona. For this R&D&I programme, 500 KEUR were allocated during April-September 2017 to define the KPIs and challenges towards becoming an international digital hub.

The 3.6-3.8 GHz spectrum auction raised 402 MEUR end of July 2018.

5G timeline in Spain
Source: IDATE DigiWorld, as of 27 July 2018

Broadband strategy paper

Nordic cooperation on 5G

Upcoming 5G spectrum auctions: preliminary study on 3.4-3.8 GHz and 24.25-27.5 GHz, May 2018


The 5G strategy in Sweden is based on the paper released in March 2017 entitled “A Completely Connected Sweden by 2025 – a Broadband Strategy”.

Trial licenses have been granted on a first-come first served basis, valid from 2017 until 31st December 2019. 200 MHz of spectrum was made available in the 3.4-3.6 GHz band and 1000 Hz in the 24.5-275 GHz band.

An auction of 700 MHz frequencies is scheduled in Q4 2018.

The Nordic countries signed a letter of intent in May 2018 to deepen cooperation on 5G.

5G strategy for the UK, 2016

Strategy paper “Next Generation Mobile Technologies: A 5G Strategy for the UK”, March 2017

Group of 5G research centers

“5G Testbeds and Trials”, April 2018-March 2019


5G was initiated in 2016 when the Government announced its National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) worth in total of 23 BGBP, of which 740 MGBP funded by the government aiming at 5G trials and full fiber deployment across the UK by 2020-2021. Projects must complete all grant-funded activities by 31 March 2019.

5G timeline in the UK
Source: IDATE DigiWorld, as of 17 July 2018

Latest News in Europe

Draft 5G auction conditions in Germany

The BundesNetzAgentur released 5G auction draft conditions awaiting final validation in November 26, 2018.

5G in the UK: EE expands 5G trials while 3 UK reveals a £2 billion investment plan

EE announced the opening of nine sites for 5G NR trials, and 3 UK announced an investment plan for the development and commercial launch of 5G services

700MHz auctions planned for 2019 in Spain and Belgium

The frequency band will be gradually released for 5G applications by March 2020 in Spain

Vodafone announced its 5G partners in Germany

Vodafone Germany partners up with Deutsche Bahn and automobile firms for the first 5G mast in the country.

ARCEP consultation: 5G and Innovation

ARCEP launched a public consultation on 5G spectrum allocation methods and conditions

ESA actions in the 5G field

How to get ESA funding for trials combining 5G with space applications in the context of 5Groningen?

Deutsche Telekom has taken another step towards commercial 5G launch

Deutsche Telekom announced a network partnership with Telefonica in October 2018 and an eight-point plan on 5G for Germany.

Italian 5G spectrum auction

The auction on 21 September raised 4.42 billion EUR, of which 2.2 billion EUR for mid-range frequencies

3.4-3.8 GHz auctions in Finland

The 130 MHz licences were awarded to the three different players

Subscribe to our mailing list