Government set for for £3.5bn windfall as MoD auctions items

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The Ministry of Defence (MoD) is to auction some of its valuable radio spectrum as the government seeks to cash in to the tune of £3.5 billion on demand for 4G mobiles and wireless internet.

Around 200 megahertz of the spectrum currently used by the MoD will be included in the sale to take place in 2014. Announcing the plan to MPs, defence minister Philip Dunne said allowing private operators to access the spectrum could increase the availability of communications services “vital to the UK’s prosperity”.

Preparations for the sale are expected to start at the end of 2013 with the auction completed by the summer of 2014 and Mr Dunne said: “The sale will give private operators the opportunity to acquire more capacity to support, for example, the introduction of fourth-generation mobile services to people in cities, towns and villages across the United Kingdom, or to expand wireless access to broadband services.”