Scarce resources

Annual report 2021

Numbers are only available in limited quantity. The BIPT is tasked with managing the national numbering plan and the granting and withdrawal of rights of use regarding these numbers. The BIPT also participates in the fight against fraud via numbers: in 2021, a black list of telephone numbers which are very likely to be the subject of spoofing was drafted. The calls made via these numbers could be blocked if they were coming from abroad.

The BIPT is the manager of the radio spectrum on national territory. Thus, it assigns frequency bands to operators, in order to distribute this spectrum in an optimal fashion. The temporary rights of use granted by the BIPT in 2020 enabled the start of the deployment of 5G in 2021, pending the spectrum auction organised by the BIPT, foreseen in June 2022.

The BIPT supports and guides innovation via the organisation of auctions but also in several other aspects. In 2021, the Institute published the results of its study objectifying the risk of saturation of 4G networks. The BIPT also provides reliable information to the general public over new technologies: in 2021, it coordinated the activities within a working group gathering several institutions and experts to create the knowledge and learning platform on 5G, “Parlons5G”. The BIPT also coordinated the implementation of the best practices of the European 5G toolbox to accelerate the deployment of 5G networks. In the same context of promotion of very high-capacity networks, the BIPT also set the technical conditions for the placing on the Belgian market of Wi-Fi equipment in a new 6 GHz radio frequency band.

The BIPT has also been assigned the task of monitoring the electromagnetic spectrum: it thus carries out preventive inspections and monitors major events. The health crisis limited the number of inspections in 2021. However, the BIPT started the modernisation of its monitoring resources, both fixed and mobile.

Read the full version of the report (PDF)