Asia-Pacific Conference


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Please see below a copy of the conference agenda for this year's conference. To discuss any aspect of this year's event, or for details of how you can become involved in next year's conference, please email Tom Chinnock at or call +44 (0) 2920 783025.


Wednesday 6 November, 2013


09:00 – 10:45

Keynote Presentations

Moderator: Amit Nagpal, Partner, Aetha Consulting

09:00 – 09:05

Introduction from the Conference Rapporteur

Moderator: Amit Nagpal, Partner, Aetha Consulting

09:05 – 09:30

Keynote Presentation: View from the United States

Ambassador Daniel A. Sepulveda, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, US Department of State

09:30 – 09:55

Keynote Presentation: A roadmap for the release of spectrum in Canada

Kelly Gillis, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister, Spectrum, Information technologies and Telecommunications Sector, Industry Canada

09:55 – 10:20

Keynote Presentation: View from Latin America

Luis Lucatero, Chief of Regulatory Policy, IFETEL Mexico

10:20 – 10:45

Keynote Presentation: Australian experiences of 700MHz and 2.5 GHz bands

Richard Bean, Deputy Chairman, Australian Communications and Media Authority

10:45 – 11:00

Morning Break, kindly sponsored by Ericsson

11:00 – 12:40

Incentive Auctions design and structure - how will it work in practice?

The incentive auction scheduled to start in the US in 2014 is the first auction of this type ever conducted and, as such, has required the development of a new and unique design comprising two separate phases - a reverse auction and a forward auction. This session will look in more detail at this innovative new design and at how it will work in practice, as well as at how the spectrum that is freed up should be allocated, and at ensuring the successful repacking and transition of broadcasters.

- What should be considered a realistic target date for the incentive auctions to begin? Based on this what deadlines need to be considered for the issuance of final rules and auction procedures?
- What auction strategy and design should be used to best meet the needs of all users and avoid any potential competition issues?
- Is it feasible that the FCC may face a scenario where the $1.75 billion Broadcaster Relocation Fund is insufficient to cover the relocation costs incurred by broadcasters and cable operators, and if so, how should this be addressed?
- What challenges and issues remain for the FCC to consider when developing channel repacking rules and how can these be addressed?
- What proportion of the freed-up spectrum should be made available on a licensed basis, and how much should be unlicensed?
- If successful, could the model feasibly be as a blueprint for the 600Mhz band in other countries within the Americas and globally?

Moderator: Richard Marsden, Vice President, NERA Economic Consulting

11:00 – 11:15

Opening Presentation

Gary Epstein, Chief, Incentive Auction Task Force, FCC

11:15 – 12:40

Interactive Panel Discussion

Each speaker will have 5 minutes at the start of the session to provide introductory remarks. Following this, the session’s moderator will then open up the discussion, which will also include questions from the floor.

Evan Kwerel, Senior Economic Advisor, FCC
Joan Marsh, Vice President, Federal Regulatory Affairs, AT&T
Peter Cramton, Professor of Economics, University of Maryland
Mark Aitken, Vice President, Advanced Technology, Sinclair Broadcasting Group


12:40 – 13:40


13:40 – 15:30

Preferential allocation in spectrum awards – ensuring long term competition or undermining existing rights holders?

In recent years, many countries in the Americas have seen consolidation amongst existing mobile operators (for example: Mobile’s offer to buy MetroPCS, and the swap deal that led to Digicel’s acquisition of Claro in Jamaica, and Claro’s takeover of Digicel in Honduras), which has led to some raising concerns about reduced competition. One potential avenue to offset this is provided by the release of new spectrum bands, such as 700 MHz and 2600 MHz, and the potential that this offers for new mobile operator entry. This is something that regulators have looked to exploit in recent auctions seen in the region by reserving a proportion of the available spectrum specifically for certain groups, most notably new entrants, but also – in some cases – state-owned incumbents or wholesale use.

- To what extent should recent operator mergers and consolidations seen in the Americas be considered as a threat to competition?
- What examples of preferential allocation have been seen in recent auctions in both the Americas and beyond, and what outcomes and trends have emerged?
- Other common incentives are to provide mandated roaming and reduce roll-out obligations for entrants. What are the merits of such interventions, and what will the likely short and long term impact be on local markets?
- To what extent can regulatory tools such as this offset concerns about reduced competition and provide a spur to innovation and customer service?
- How can it be ensured that competition is sustainable, and that it does not simply lead to temporary price reductions and the diversion of funds away from the development of 4G infrastructure and services?
- Where does the balance lie between ensuring existing rights holders get enough spectrum and delivering a competitive marketplace?

Moderator: Amit Nagpal, Partner, Aetha Consulting

13:40 – 15:30

Panel Discussion

Each speaker will have 5 minutes at the start of the session to provide introductory remarks. Following this, the session’s moderator will then open up the discussion, which will also include questions from the floor.

Thomas Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University
Melesia Sutherland-Campbell, Chair, Regulatory & Emerging Technologies Committee, The Caribbean Association of National Telecommunication Organizations (CANTO)
Steven Berry, President & CEO, Competitive Carriers Association
Stefan Zehle, CEO, Coleago Consulting
Representative, Mobile Carrier*

15:30 – 15:45

Afternoon Break, kindly sponsored by Ericsson

15:45 – 17:15

Meeting the spectrum needs of the smart cities of the future and an increasingly data-hungry society

Mobile is expected to play a vital role in connecting and supporting the 'smart cities' of the future. At the same time, society is seeing huge increases in traffic flows of video and other data heavy multimedia materials. This means that comprehensive spectrum planning is required now in order for spectrum to be made available to transmit data without any interference or disturbance, and to meet the needs of these emerging technologies and services.

- What are the expected spectrum needs of the cities of the future and how can it be ensured that these be met efficiently?
- What frequencies provide the best options to provide spectrum for the next generation of M2M connectivity?
- Is there a need for dedicated or exclusive spectrum for smart grid services, or can shared spectrum be used?
- What is the future role of satellite and of the key spectrum bands that the sector holds, such as the C-band?
- What is the most appropriate technology mix to deliver the required bandwidth and meet future spectrum needs?

Moderator: Anna Gomez, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP

15:45 – 16:00

Overview of recent FCC wireless policies and priorities for future spectrum use

John Leibovitz, Deputy Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, FCC

16:00 – 16:15

Presentation on public safety broadband

Paul Steinberg, Chief Technology Officer, Motorola Solutions, Inc.

16:15 – 17:15

Panel discussion

Above speakers plus:

Gerry Oberst, Senior Vice President, Global Regulatory & Governmental Strategy, SES
Apurva Mody, Chairman, Whitespace Alliance
Steve Sharkey, Director, Chief Engineering and Technology Policy, Federal Regulatory, T-Mobile

17:15 – 17:20

Cocktail reception welcome address

17:20 – 19:00

Cocktail Reception, kindly sponsored by O3b Networks

Thursday 7 November, 2013


09:00 – 09:20

Opening Presentation

High level speaker to be confirmed

09:20 – 10:40

Developing a spectrum strategy to relieve the capacity crunch - i. Piecing together the patchwork – overcoming the challenge of LTE spectrum fragmentation

Most countries across the Americas have now taken their decision on the 700Mhz bandplan, with Bolivia joining the US and Canada in using the US bandplan, and the majority of other countries choosing to follow the A-Pac band. Taking this into account and also looking globally at other bands such as AWS, the patchwork effect on band adoption plans of LTE spectrum for 4G becomes extremely challenging, with some suggesting that in order to cover all of the world’s LTE networks, a vendor is faced with the prospect of designing as many as 10 different devices.

- What will this fragmentation mean for manufacturers and hardware providers when looking at which bands to support in their devices; and what will it mean for operators?
- What regulatory and technological solutions exist to help enable device compatibility both of LTE phones across both different carrier’s networks and also when roaming?
- Is there still the long-term possibility of a co-ordinated allocation for low-frequency mobile spectrum both across the Americas and globally?
- Could dynamic spectrum access play a part in finding a solution?
- What is the situation with AWS spectrum and does the AWS band have roaming potential globally?
- To what extent is a globally universal LTE phone a realistic possibility?

09:20 – 10:40

Interactive Panel Discussion

Moderator: Richard Marsden, Vice President, NERA Economic Consulting

Luis Lucatero, Chief of Regulatory Policy, IFETEL Mexico
Beatrice Covassi, Digital Agenda and ICT Counselor, The EU Delegation to the United States
Carl Povelites, Assistant Vice President of Public Policy, AT&T
Chris Pearson, President, 4G Americas

10:40 – 11:00

Morning Break, kindly sponsored by Ericsson

11:00 – 12:45

ii. What options exist for finding additional spectrum capacity for mobile broadband

Against the backdrop of the issues discussed in the last session of fragmentation of spectrum bands, at the same time, regulators have the continual battle to identify new bandwidth for the next generation of mobile broadband.

- Are mobile operators utilising the spectrum that they already have to its maximum, and could anything be done to increase the efficiency of this?
- What are the most likely options in both higher and lower frequency bands to provide additional spectrum for mobile broadband?
- What new bands for mobile are likely to be focused on at WRC-15?
- What are the future plans for the 2.5 Ghz band in both the US and elsewhere?
- What future role could new technologies (such as LTE broadcast) conceivably play in increasing spectrum efficiency as an alternative to finding additional bandwidth?

Moderator: Phil Goldstein, Editor, Fierce Wireless

11:00 – 11:20

Introductory Presentation – View from the FCC

Mindel De La Torre, Chief, International Bureau, FCC

11:20 – 12:45

Interactive Panel Discussion

Each speaker will have 5 minutes at the start of the session to provide introductory remarks. Following this, the session’s moderator will then open up the discussion, which will also include questions from the floor.

Marc Dupuis, Director General, Engineering, Planning and Standards Branch, Industry Canada
John Kneuer, Board Member, Globalstar, Inc.
Charla Rath, Vice President, Wireless Policy Development, Verizon


12:45 – 13:45


13:45 – 15:15

iii. Finding additional unlicensed spectrum – options and opportunities

In addition to the need for more licensed spectrum, there is also a push for additional spectrum to be found for unlicensed use. It is argued that doing this will encourage additional innovation and allow for the next generation of technologies such as ‘super WiFi’ and for whitespace devices. With some already talking about a ‘WiFi crunch’, where is this additional capacity going to come from?

- What proportion of spectrum should be made available for unlicensed use?
- Could an extension of the 5 Ghz provide a solution to finding spectrum to allow for the next generation of ‘Super WiFi’, and what other bands should be considered?
- What rules need to be in place to avoid the risk of interference?
- What scope is there for international harmonisation on WiFi bands and other unlicensed spectrum?
- Is there a need for ‘common’ spectrum bands to be identified for backhaul links in order to achieve equipment economies of scale?
- What tools are available to both policymakers and operators to help encourage the introduction of femtocells and other small cell devices, and enable them to meet their potential of alleviating pressure in bottleneck areas?

Moderator: Phil Goldstein, Editor, Fierce Wireless

Maximiliano Martinhão, Telecommunications Secretary, Ministry of Communications, Brazil
Mark Settle, Chief, Policy and Rules Division, Office of Engineering and Technology, FCC
Andres Maz, Executive Director of Advanced Technology Policy, Cisco
Paula Boyd, Director, Government and Regulatory Affairs, Microsoft

15:15 – 15:30

Afternoon Break, kindly sponsored by Ericsson

15:30 – 17:00

iv. Increasing the efficiency of public safety and federal spectrum

Each country across the Americas has large chunks of spectrum reserved for Federal or Government use, and for public safety bodies. This session will explore whether there are any ways in which the efficiency of this spectrum could be increased, or any of it could even be released and made available for private use.

- How much additional spectrum could potentially be made available across the Americas by increasing efficiency or sharing bandwith, and how can it be ensured that the needs of public safety and security users are completely safeguarded?
- What options are currently being explored in the Americas and globally for reallocation of spectrum currently reserved for federal to private uses?
- The US DoD has recently held feasibility tests with mobile operators to explore sharing spectrum in the 1755-1850 Mhz band. How successful have these been, and could this model of public-private sharing within spectrum bands be something that is used more widely both in the US and across the Americas?
- To what extent could the 3.5 GHz band be used for sharing and what potential does the ‘three-tier’ authorization framework have to extend capacity and protect all users from interference?

Moderator: Nancy Victory, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP

Karl Nebbia, Associate Administrator, Office of Spectrum Management, NTIA
Fernando Carrillo Valderrábano, Director General for Spectrum Planning and Satellite Communications, IFETEL Mexico
Patrick Welsh, Assistant Vice President, Wireless Policy Development, Verizon
Chris Pearson, President, 4G Americas
Jose Martin, CEO, PowerTrunk, Inc.


End of conference

Organizers and partners for this event



Wed 6 November, 2013 09.00 to
Thu 7 November, 2013 17.30




The National Press Club

529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor - Washington, DC 20045

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