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2007 News Releases




Two-Letter Callsigns

Date : 29 / 03 / 2007
Author : Michael Owen - VK3KI

The WIA knows that many amateurs are very interested in the issue of two letter callsigns since ACMA ceased issuing more than 2 years ago.

The WIA has on a number of occasions sought clarification of ACMA�s position.

In its most recent formal letter to WIA President, Michael Owen VK3KI, Alan Jordan of ACMA explained the steps that had been taken and the present position as follows:

"On 19 October 2005 ACMA implemented new Amateur licensing arrangements that included the introduction of three new licensing options under the Amateur licence type.

Under the new licensing arrangements, callsigns previously allocated under Unrestricted, Limited and Intermediate licences were carried across to the replacement Advanced licences. Under this arrangement, one of the blocks of callsigns that became available to ex Intermediate and Limited licensees under the Advanced licence was the block of callsigns having two-letter suffixes. Historically these callsigns have been highly valued amongst Amateurs. However, with the exception of Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory, the anticipated demand for these callsigns would have exceeded the supply.

For this reason ACMA temporarily ceased the issue of two-letter callsigns while an equitable arrangement for their allocation was being developed.

Unfortunately, since October 2005, while some progress has been made on this project, ACMA has not had the resources to finalise this body of work. As you would be aware, ACMA is currently, in accordance with the 'Outcomes of the Review of Amateur Service Regulation', working to amend the Radiocommunications Licence Conditions (Amateur Licence) Determination No.1 of 1997 (the Amateur LCD) and introduce a Class Licence that will allow visiting overseas Amateurs to operate in Australia without having to take out an individual licence.

However, work on the Amateur LCD and the Class Licence is now coming to the point where resources can again be focused on the two-letter callsign project. It is therefore anticipated that procedures to resolve this issue will be in place by the end of June 2007."

The WIA President commented as follows: �I know that many have been very concerned at the inordinate delay, and in asking for formal advice, I had hoped that ACMA would at least explain the "equitable arrangement� they contemplate. However, at least a deadline has been set as to when the matter will be finalised."

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