Government of Canada releases updated plan to put spectrum to work for Canadians

News release

New Spectrum Outlook outlines plan to make spectrum available for more affordable wireless services, faster rollout of 5G and improved rural connectivity

August 11, 2023 – Ottawa, Ontario 

Access to fast, reliable and affordable Internet and wireless services is essential for Canadians. That is why the Government of Canada continues to make more spectrum available to improve the quality, coverage and price of telecom services.

Today, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, announced the release of Spectrum Outlook 2023 to 2027, outlining the government’s plans to use spectrum to deliver affordable and high-quality telecom services, support faster deployment of 5G, improve rural connectivity, promote the use of wireless technologies that will help address climate change, and advance reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples. The Spectrum Outlook also lays out the government’s spectrum release plans for the coming years, ensuring that enough spectrum is available for the services Canadians depend on.

Building on a number of spectrum accomplishments since the release of Spectrum Outlook 2018 to 2022, the government will also continue to advance its “use it or lose it” approach to spectrum so that it is put to use promptly for the benefit of all Canadians.


“When put to good use, spectrum can drive innovation, improve rural connectivity, promote competition and even support efforts to address climate change. The Government of Canada will continue to make more of this important public resource available and ensure it is quickly put to use to strengthen the telecom services Canadians depend on.”
– The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

“Improving connectivity in rural, remote and Indigenous communities will always be a core objective of the government’s spectrum policies. By making more spectrum available with the right rules, we can continue to improve access to high-quality services and ensure that Canadians, no matter where they live, benefit from the latest wireless technologies and innovations.”
– The Honourable Gudie Hutchings, Minister of Rural Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Quick facts

  • When planning spectrum releases and consultations, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada considers the demand for various wireless services, international spectrum allocations, the development of telecom equipment ecosystems, and standards that allow Canadians to access the latest technologies.

  • The 3800 MHz auction, scheduled to begin on October 24, 2023, will be the third major auction to make spectrum available for 5G, following the 600 MHz auction in 2019 and the 3500 MHz auction in 2021. 

  • The government will be making more 5G spectrum available in the future, including through non-competitive local licensing and an upcoming auction for millimetre wave spectrum.

Associated links


Audrey Champoux
Press Secretary and Senior Communications Advisor
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

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