07. December 2018 15:46 UHR IST
Germany's Network Regulatory Authority has warned the government that the auctioning of fifth-generation mobile phone licenses could be delayed if operators have to offer roaming services in rural areas Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) reported on Thursday.
The Government considers changes to the auctioning requirements that provide for mandatory roaming in rural areas with inconsistent mobile coverage, FAZ ]citing a letter from the Regulatory Authority of the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) to the Ministries of Economy and traffic.
These new conditions would "cause significant legal uncertainty and jeopardize the auction process," the BNetzA said in its letter [FAO .
Setting the ground rules for 5G services, which could drive connected factories and wireless broadband, has been difficult; r Concerns that Europe's largest economy, already plagued by uneven 4G coverage, continues to lag behind its competitors in the digital economy Area could fall behind.
The BNetzA stated in its letter that the proposed changes to the auction requirements could lead to unpredictably higher costs for the three main operators.
A spokeswoman for the German Ministry of Economic Affairs declined to comment The BNetzA and the Ministry of Transport were not immediately available for comment.
It is expected that Germany's top three network operators – Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone and Telefonica Deutschland – despite their reservations about the design and potential costs of 5G-A offer.  A roaming requirement, if implemented, could attract a new entrant who lacks its own developed network infrastructure, such as United Internet, which operates virtual mobile operator 1 & 1 Drillisch.
The Network Regulatory Authority kicked off the ball last month auctioning 5G licenses, setting a deadline for submission on January 25 and stating that the auction would begin in early 2019.