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The European Commission (EC) has removed the ban on radio spectrum sharing, in a bid to cope with growing demand for broadband services.

With data consumption rising all the time, the EC is looking to ensure national regulators such as Ofcom can make the most of the spectrum that is available.

Providing spectrum can be shared without interfering with existing rights or downgrading quality of service, operators will be given the clearance required to utilise unused frequencies.

The EC believes a co-ordinated European approach to sharing spectrum will lead to greater mobile network capacity, cheaper wireless broadband, and new markets such as tradable secondary rights for a given spectrum allocation.

It also wants to ensure network operators can take advantage of White Space between frequency bands, to support mobile broadband and Wi-Fi.

Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the EC’s Digital Agenda, commented that radio spectrum is the "economic oxygen" used by every single person and business.

"If we run out of spectrum then mobile networks and broadband won’t work," she claimed.

"That is unacceptable, we must maximise this scarce resource by re-using it and creating a single market out of it."

Ms Kroes said a single market for spectrum is needed in order to regain global industrial leadership in mobile and data, and to attract more research and development investments.

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