Source: The Critical Communications Review | Gert Jan Wolf editor
Norway has taken an important decision about a new emergency critical communications network that combines state ownership and purchases from commercial mobile operators.
The choice of concept for the new Norwegian critical communications emergency network has now been made. Eline Palm Paxal, department director in the department for emergency and preparedness communications, said that she is happy with the decision.
An important choice of direction has been made, and this is a milestone for us. It has been decided that a preliminary project will be initiated in line with the recommended concept, and we are in dialogue with the Ministry of Justice and Emergency Management regarding the mandate and necessary funding.
The chosen concept combines state ownership and purchases from commercial mobile operators. This means that the state must own the emergency network-specific services, including through the acquisition of a technical platform. The state provides this type of service today through today’s Nødnett. Coverage and core networks must be provided by commercial mobile operators. The power of innovation in the mobile market and mobile technology such as 5G and subsequent generations is then utilised. At the same time, the needs for security, coverage and robustness for emergency and emergency communications must be taken care of.
The decision is important to ensure a good emergency network where national control and security are well taken care of, says director of DSB, Elisabeth Aarsæther.
The concept was recommended by DSB and Nkom, and supported by external quality assurance.
Good advice and guidance has been provided for the work throughout the process, including from the ministries, quality assurance and the professional resources involved. We have listened and learned. In such a large government project, it is both natural and necessary to ask critical questions along the way and explore new directions and possibilities, says Eline Palm Paxal.
The concept is also suitable for safeguarding opportunities for further development of solutions and services, ensuring flexibility to be able to include new users and avoiding unwanted influence on competition in the mobile market.
A step-by-step approach is planned. Mobile technology and emergency and preparedness services are developing, and it is important not to detail the solutions too early. Other countries have similar projects. We follow along and learn from the experiences and knowledge of others. We benefit from this in our further work, says Paxal.
Transitioning to a new emergency network is a major task, and it is important for DSB to involve current users of Nødnett in order to design and implement solutions that talk together. Paxal explains that this is crucial in order to maintain and continue the important benefits of cooperation and the Nødnett effect.
Initially, we involved representatives from the emergency services. Eventually, more user groups will be involved. Together we will deliver a new emergency network, concludes Paxal.
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