Annual report 2022
As the manager of the national numbering plan the BIPT makes sure that numbers, which are only available in limited quantity, are used efficiently. In that context a decision was taken about the use of non-geographic numbers (so not having a geographic meaning) for communication services other than those involving direct interpersonal communication, e.g. for automatic data transfer. There was also a coordination of the operators’ activities for the creation of a new database of all Belgian telephone numbers.
The BIPT assigns frequency bands to operators so that they acquire user rights to offer mobile products to end-users. In the “multiband auction” frequency bands were auctioned for both the new 5G spectrum (700 MHz, 1400 MHz, 3600 MHz) and for the existing 2G and 3G radio spectrum (900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz). Five operators acquired user rights: Orange Belgium NV/SA, Proximus NV/SA, Telenet Group NV/SA, and 2 new operators, Citymesh Mobile NV/SA and Network Research Belgium NV/SA. The BIPT also formulated in 2022 a proposal for a royal decree about the use of the 3800-4200 MHz band for local private wireless 4G and 5G broadband networks. The operators share the use of the antenna sites, whereby the non-profit organisation “RISS” (“Radio Infrastructure Site Sharing”) is responsible for the coordination among the operators, under the BIPT’s supervision.
Over5G.be/Parlons5G.be is a 5G knowledge and learning platform created under the coordination by the BIPT, in order to inform citizens objectively and neutrally about the 5G technology, including any health effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields. To that end the BIPT entered into a cooperation agreement with Sciensano.
In 2022 the BIPT issued various technical requirements regarding the use of radio equipment. In addition, within the context of technological neutrality, a number of decisions were taken to make parallel use of various technologies on certain frequency bands, thus allowing 5G to be introduced in a number of specific frequency bands. As the body supervising the spectrum, the BIPT carried out both preventive inspections and inspections during major events in 2022 and it solved cases of harmful interference.