5G regulation and law in Ukraine

Information current as of 1 January 2020

What is the state of 5G deployment in Ukraine?

5G is not available in Ukraine yet. In May 2019, the President of Ukraine signed a decree launching 5G technology in the country. Under this decree, the Ukrainian government and the telecommunications regulator must develop and adopt a step-by-step plan for implementing 5G technology in Ukraine in 2020.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian mobile operator Lifecell, in cooperation with the Ukraine branch of Ericsson, has deployed a 5G demo-segment in Kiev. Another operator, Vodafone Ukraine has confirmed its plans to launch 5G communication tests in the second half of 2019. However, the commercial launch can be expected in course of 2020 at the earliest.

Which telcos and communications players are launching 5G services?

As 5G is not yet commercially launched, no companies are currently launching 5G services. However, it can be expected that the three biggest operators in the market will be interested in 5G services, i.e. Kyivstar, Vodafone Ukraine and Lifecell.

Are there any public tenders for spectrum licences?

During the past several years, Ukraine has carried out two several auctions among mobile operators for spectrum licences - one in 2014 for launching 3G, and another in 2015 for 4G. No 5G public tender has been announced yet.

Has there been any comment on when there might be?

According to public announcements, Ukrainian regulator NKRZI plans to carry out the first tender for the distribution of 5G bands in 2020.

What has the government said regarding spectrum licences for commercial use?

The Ukrainian government and the president fully support the development of new generation networks. The recent Presidential Decree is the first step in the process of introducing new 5G technology in Ukraine. The government will now be developing a step-by-step implementation plan.

Are the rules for 5G already drafted, and if so, what do they say?

The rules for 5G have not been drafted yet. It is expected that the rules will be drafted closer to the public auction.

What are or would be the rules for granting competitors access to the new 5G networks, once they are deployed?

There are no existing rules regarding access to physical infrastructure of 5G networks. It is expected that the rules will be drafted closer to the public auction. Similar to 3G and 4G rules, we may assume that 5G rules will allow companies to access the physical infrastructure based on fair, proportionate and non-discriminatory conditions.

Olga Belyakova