Contribution of Canada
MOU for the GMPCS Arrangement
At the recent meeting of the ITU Informal Group
held April 3-4, 1997, Canadian representatives benefited from
the extensive discussion of all of the matters relevant to the
GMPCS arrangement. Based on these discussions and the input and
output documents at the meeting of the Informal Group, this submission:
- discusses the issues raised during the meeting
of the Informal Group; and
- contains at Annex 1 a draft Arrangement which
accommodates those issues discussed at the meeting as well as
the MoU and other Opinions.
2 Discussion of the Issues Raised at the Meeting
of the Informal Group
2.1 Legal Status of the Arrangement
During the meeting of the Informal Group, it was
clear that it would be problematic if there were an attempt to
qualify the GMPCS Arrangement as "voluntary", "binding"
or "binding after signature". Indeed, there were two
interventions urging that it would be prudent to avoid these and
similar terms. The main problem that would be caused if the GMPCS
Arrangement were raised to a legally binding status, would be
a requirement for formal government approval and, in the case
of one intervener, this could take five years.
In practice, and for the intended purpose, it is
not necessary for the GMPCS Arrangement to be given such a legally
binding status. The most appropriate status is for it to be 'An
Arrangement Among Participating Administrations'. Under such
status, an Administration would send a notice of participation
to the ITU Secretary-General and would then receive the benefits
of the Arrangement. If that Administration chooses not to participate,
it will not receive the benefits. The benefits in question are,
mainly, that the licensed users of that country will be able to
circulate with their GMPCS terminals in the other countries which
are participating in the Arrangement.
This approach avoids the problems that would arise
if, unnecessarily, the status of the GMPCS Arrangement was defined
as "binding" in any way.
- Exemptions or Conditional Participation
Many Administrations indicated a desire to have
a mechanism included in the GMPCS Arrangement to:
- qualify that there are certain conditions related
to an Administration's participation in the Arrangement;
- exempt an Administration from certain provisions
of the Arrangement; or
- identify significant features of its system for
the operator of that system.
In order to offer such a mechanism, the most effective
means to do this would be by, as and when appropriate, adding
Annexes to the Arrangement. This would be a practical administrative
means to provide this mechanism within the Arrangement. It is
foreseen that bullets one and two above would be used only exceptionally
and could not contain provisions which would be tantamount to
- Blanket Licensing
There is no doubt that a single licence to cover
all of the GMPCS terminals of a particular GMPCS system in a country
is the most convenient and efficient licensing practice. Despite
these merits, however, there were some concerns expressed that
such a practice may not be possible in all countries within their
current regulatory regime.
In practice, the particular licensing regime is
within the sovereign rights of each Administration. Whether an
Administration issues a blanket licence for all of the GMPCS terminals
for a particular system in its country, or if it issues individual
licences for each individual GMPCS terminal, this does not have
any impact on that Administration's participation in the GMPCS
While it is prudent to urge all Administrations
to issue blanket licences, and recognizing that the MoU refers
to "class licences or blanket approvals", the particular
method of licensing does not need to be a requirement of participating
in the GMPCS Arrangement.
- Recognition and Definition of Type Approval
While there were many diverse views expressed on
the three aspects of type approval, they can be summarized as
- the definition of "Type Approval" must
include elements related to:
- electromagnetic interference including such parameters
as those which protect other systems from third party harm;
- electromagnetic compatibility including such
items as assignment of frequencies; and
- electromagnetic exposure including such parameters
as the permitted level of non-ionizing radiation.
- the type approval could be based on a global
standard, a number of regional standards, or on a published system
specification. In the latter two cases, there may be the need
for additional provisions to ensure the mutual recognition of
the type approved GMPCS terminals issued in another country.
- some Administrations indicated that they would
accept a set of simplified technical approval requirements for
GMPCS terminals visiting or transiting their countries than the
technical requirements for those terminals entering a country
for being placed on the market.
Other Administrations indicated that their technical
approval requirements were the same for a brief visit as for an
entry for placing a terminal on the market.
These two situations can be accommodated by having
two technical approval Annexes to the Arrangement. One Annex
could contain the set of simplified technical approval requirements
and the other the more rigorous technical approval requirements.
An Administration could then indicate with its Notice of Participation
the technical approval annex(es) it wished to apply for the two
During the discussions,
it became evident that, regardless of the technical approval requirements
that are applied, there is an important distinction between the
customs practices for entry of a GMPCS terminal for a temporary
or transitory period and entry of a terminal for placing on the
market. In the first case, Opinion 4 clearly stated that there
would be an exemption from customs restrictions for visiting or
transitory terminals. There is no exemption for entry to place
on the market and it is foreseen that such terminals would be
subject to the applicable customs and duty of that country.
- Access to Traffic Data
These provisions in the
Arrangement are to ensure that there is an appropriate and equitable
financial settlement for the traffic flow to and from a country.
To achieve this, GMPCS systems will be structured to provide
appropriate traffic data to duly authorized officials and assist
with any measures intended to identify unauthorized traffic access
to the GMPCS system.
3 The Proposed GMPCS Arrangement
Attached at Annex 1 is a Proposed GMPCS Arrangement
which reflects the discussions that took place at the meeting
of the Informal Group.
May 13, 1997
Arrangement to Facilitate the Introduction
of GMPCS, Including Regional Systems
- The ITU World Telecommunication Policy Forum
(WTPF) was established by Resolution No.2 of the Kyoto Plenipotentiary
Conference. Its purpose was to provide a forum where ITU Member
States and Sector Members could discuss and exchange information
on emerging telecommunication policy and regulatory matters.
At the 1995 Session of the ITU Council, Resolution No. 1083 established
that the WTPF would meet in Geneva in October 1996 to discuss
"Global Mobile Personal Communications by Satellite"
- At that meeting, the WTPF supported the early
introduction of GMPCS services by unanimously adopting Opinion
No. 4 which outlined a global Arrangement for the free circulation
of GMPCS user terminals. Pursuant to Opinion No. 4, this GMPCS
Arrangement is established for participation by Administrations
of ITU Member States, GMPCS system operators, GMPCS service providers
and manufacturers of GMPCS terminals. The global Arrangement
would be the basis for the introduction of GMPCS including the
permission to carry a terminal into a visited country and to use
it within the framework of a licensing scheme (i.e., without the
need for obtaining individual authorization for the terminal in
the visited country) and may also be the basis for placing terminals
on the market. Under the provisions of this Arrangement, the
participants will be able to cooperate in the development of GMPCS
to the benefit of the international community.
An Administration which wishes to participate in
the GMPCS Arrangement will advise the Secretary-General and, as
a participant in the Arrangement, it will receive the benefits
of the Arrangement. The corollary to this is that, if an Administration
does not want to participate, or withdraws its participation in
the Arrangement, it will not receive the benefits. With this
understanding, the problematic concepts of "binding"
or "voluntary" are avoided.
- Scope of the Arrangement
- Recognizing that each Administration has the
right to determine whether, and in what form, GMPCS will be provided
in its territory, the voluntary principles adopted by the WTPF
as contained in Opinion No. 2, the relevant treaty provisions
of the ITU basic instruments and other regional agreements or
directives, and the work in this area carried out by regional
telecommunication organizations, this Arrangement defines the
conditions for the purpose of the introduction of GMPCS including
the circulation of GMPCS terminals and placing the terminals on
- mutual recognition of the technical approval
of GMPCS terminals;
- mutual recognition of licensing of GMPCS terminals;
- the method of identification of GMPCS terminals
which qualify under this Arrangement.
- When implementing this Arrangement on a national
level, Administrations are urged to ensure that relevant national
telecommunication regulations and customs requirements support
the full realization of the goals of this Arrangement.
- Mutual recognition of the conditions in this
Arrangement constitute the basis for either the circulation of
GMPCS terminals, or the placing of terminals on the market, or
both, in those countries which are associated with this Arrangement.
- Additionally, this Arrangement contains provisions
for access by duly authorized national authorities to the best
available traffic data concerning traffic originated in or routed
to its national territory.
- Principle No. 3 of Opinion No. 2 in the WTPF
Report urges Administrations to maximize the competition in the
provision of GMPCS services in order to realize the full potential
of GMPCS. Administrations should take account of this when they
are advising the ITU Secretary-General of the systems to which
they will allow circulation.
- This Arrangement is structured into six Articles
containing the provisions that are common and applicable to all
GMPCS systems and associated terminals. Provisions and procedures
which are unique to a particular GMPCS class or system and, additional
provisions for the placement of GMPCS terminals on the market,
are in the Annexes to this Arrangement.
- Definitions of Terms Used in the Arrangement
- Unless otherwise indicated, the terms listed
below shall have the following meanings:
- Circulation - Permission
to carry a GMPCS terminal into a visited country and use it without
need for obtaining authorization in the visited country.
- Licensing - The issuance
of a licence by the government of the country to which the GMPCS
user is a resident, in conformity with the national regulations
of that country and Article 24 of the ITU Radio Regulations.
An Administration may issue a blanket licence to cover all of
the GMPCS terminals of a particular system or it may issue an
individual licence for each GMPCS terminal.
- Technical Approval
- The authorization for a GMPCS terminal that is pursuant to a
relevant global standard, preferably one established by the ITU,
and with the prime purpose of giving assurance that the use of
the device will not cause interference to other radio users.
This term is used in place of "type approval" which
is a term that has a specific defined meaning in many national
An Administration may, with its Notice of Participation,
indicate the technical approval requirements that it wishes to
apply for brief visits and for entry to place on the market as
described in Annex [XX] and/or Annex [YY].
- GMPCS System - A satellite
system providing telecommunication services directly to end users
from a constellation of satellites or a single satellite.
- GMPCS Terminal - An
earth station as defined in RR S1.63 [RR 60] of the ITU Radio
- GMPCS System Operator
- The entity responsible for the operation of a type of GMPCS
system set out in the Annexes to this Arrangement. The GMPCS
System Operator, inter alia, is responsible for providing
an authorized GMPCS Service Provider with access to the GMPCS
system and for establishing a suitable commercial and operating
arrangement with that national GMPCS Service Provider.
- GMPCS Service Provider -
The entity authorized by the Administration of a country to provide
those GMPCS services to the public within that country. The GMPCS
Service Providers would enter into a commercial and operating
arrangement with a GMPCS System Operator.
- The Arrangement
Article 1: Technical Approval of GMPCS Terminals
- The Technical Approval of GMPCS terminals shall
be pursuant to a relevant global standard. The global standards
for particular GMPCS systems are contained in Annexes [XX] and/or
[YY]. Annex [XX] contains a minimum set of technical approval
requirements that may be adequate for entry of a GMPCS terminal
for brief visits. Annex [YY] contains technical approval requirements,
additional to the requirements of Table XX, for those Administrations
with such requirements. The issuance of the technical approval
for a specific device will be confirmation that the operation
of the device will not cause interference to other radio users.
Technical Approval of a GMPCS terminal to the requirements of
Table XX should be the minimum mandatory prerequisite for licensing.
- The technical approval requirements of Table
[YY] may include user safety (such as exposure to non-ionizing
radiation), electromagnetic compatibility (such as frequency usage
in accordance with the Table of Frequency Allocations) and avoidance
of interference to third parties. These technical approval requirements
may be contained in an ITU-R Recommendation or regional and/or
national technical specification. The participants shall accept
the technical approval of a GMPCS terminal that has been demonstrated
to meet these technical approval requirements through:
- a global technical approval process; or
- a regional technical approval process; or
- a national technical approval process; or
- a published system specification.
It should be noted that in the latter three cases,
provisions may be required to ensure the mutual recognition of
such technical approvals.
- Upon request by a participating Administration,
a GMPCS system operator, national service provider, manufacturer
or distributor shall provide test data confirming compliance with
the relevant technical standard while taking account of paragraphs
11, 13, 14 and 15.
- National administrative procedures dealing with
testing for technical approval shall be non-discriminatory among
the various GMPCS systems and readily available for examination.
Additional or unique technical approval requirements of an Administration,
which are beyond those contained in the relevant global standard,
may be required.
- Administrations at their discretion may accept
test reports from manufacturers or distributors that confirm the
technical conformance of the terminals with applicable global,
regional or national standards. Some Administrations may require
that testing be conducted by a duly accredited testing laboratory.
Article 2: Licensing of GMPCS Terminals
- An Administration, which authorizes a national
GMPCS Service Provider for a GMPCS system listed in the Annex,
shall include in its licensing requirements the provisions of
this Arrangement. Only those terminals which as a minimum conform
with the applicable technical standards may be licensed. Administrations,
with due regard to administrative efficiency and national licensing
regulations, may issue a blanket licence for all of the GMPCS
terminals of a particular system in their country, or an Administration
may issue a licence to each terminal.
Article 3: Marking of Terminals that are Authorized
under this Arrangement
- Circulation shall be allowed by participating
Administrations for terminals which have been licensed in accordance
with this Arrangement by a participating Administration and which
have an appropriate identification or marking.
Article 4: Customs
- Participating Administrations shall inform their
customs officials concerning the identifying labels or certificates
issued under this Arrangement so that authorized GMPCS terminals
brought into the country on a temporary or transitory basis can
pass their customs without undue delay or restriction. GMPCS
terminals brought into a country under this Arrangement for placing
terminals on the market shall be subject to the applicable customs,
duty, and regulatory requirements of that country.
Article 5: Access to Traffic Data
- Consistent with applicable national legislation
in the country where GMPCS service is being provided, GMPCS national
service providers shall provide, on a confidential basis, within
a reasonable period of time to any duly authorized national authority
which so requests, the best available traffic data originating
in or routed to its national territory, and will assist with any
measures intended to identify unauthorized traffic flows.
Article 6: Review
- The Signatories may periodically review this
Arrangement and modify and update it as necessary.
- Implementation of the Arrangement
Section 1: Notification
of National Participation in the Arrangement
- Administrations which implement this Arrangement
for one or more GMPCS systems in their national regulations should
so notify the Secretary-General of the ITU. The ITU will keep
the Registry of notifying Administrations and the GMPCS system(s)
which they have authorized. Notification to the Registry will
be the basis for mutual recognition by participating Administrations
of the provisions of this Arrangement relevant to the circulation
- Such notification to the ITU may also be undertaken
by regional bodies that are competent to make commitments on behalf
of Member Administrations.
Section 2: Responsibilities of the GMPCS System
- Each GMPCS system operator which wishes to associate
with this Arrangement shall advise the ITU Secretary-General that
it will carry out all of the terms and conditions of this Arrangement.
Section 3: Withdrawal from the Agreement
- An Administration which decides to no longer
participate in the Arrangement shall so notify the ITU Secretary-General.
After such a notice, GMPCS terminals of other participating Administrations
shall no longer qualify for circulation into the territory of
the Administration which has withdrawn. Similarly, GMPCS terminals
licensed by the withdrawing Administration shall no longer qualify
for circulation in the territory of the other participating Administrations.
Section 4: The Depository
24. The Secretary-General of the ITU shall be the
depository of the Arrangement. Every [six months], and more often
if necessary, the Secretary-General shall publish a list of participating
Administrations and, for each Administration, list the GMPCS systems
which are authorized in its territory.
Arrangement to Facilitate the Introduction
of GMPCS, including Regional Systems,
for NGSO MSS Systems Operating in the
1-3 GHz Frequency Bands
- This Annex applies to the NGSO GMPCS MSS systems
which operate in the 1-3 GHz frequency bands.
- The Technical Approval of GMPCS devices in this
frequency range shall be in accordance with ITU-R Recommendation
- (Additional unique features, if any, which relate
to these systems, will be contained in this Annex).
Arrangement to Facilitate the Introduction
of GMPCS, including Regional Systems
for NGSO MSS Systems
Operating in Frequency Bands Below 1 GHz
(Appropriate provisions for these systems
will be contained in this Annex)
Requirements for Technical Approval (TAR-A)
Requirements for Technical Approval (TAR-B)