Italy is likely to exceed the 2020 deadline for the transition of the 700MHz band to the telecoms sector, a senior official has said.

Agcom’s Vincenzo Lobianco told the spectrum management newsletter Policy Tracker that with DTT depending heavily on 700MHz, a switch to more efficient technologies such as DVB-T2 would be both long and expensive.

Lobianco said that even a 2022 deadline would be challenging.

A delay by Italy would go against proposals currently under discussion in Europe that put forward a “2020-2030-2025? formula.

A High Level Group chaired by former European Commissioner and WTO Director General Pascal Lamy looked at future use of the UHF spectrum band between 470 to 790MHz. It said: “the EU should adopt a common position against the co-primary allocation of the core audiovisual band (470-694MHz) to the mobile service at WRC 2015”.