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5th meeting of Asia Pacific Telecommunity Preparatory Group for WRC-15

Date : 03 / 08 / 2015
Author : Dale Hughes - VK1DSH

The APG15-5 meeting was held in Seoul, Korea between 27 July and 1 August 2015. This meeting was the final APT preparatory meeting before the World Radiocommunications Conference which will be held in Geneva in November 2015. The output of WRC-15 is an International Treaty known as the ITU Radio Regulations which governs usage of the radio frequency spectrum in all countries of the world.

The output of the APG15-5 meeting is a number of Preliminary APT Common Proposals (PACP) which provide regional views on WRC-15 agenda items; establishing these regional views is an important part of Australia’s preparation for WRC-15. Because of the importance of regional agreement on many RF spectrum issues, the Australian government and industry representatives put in substantial effort to get a regional position that is in agreement with Australia’s views. The WIA is a part of this process and represents the views of the Australian amateur community to the APG and ITU through the ACMA.

In the coming weeks, the PACP’s for each WRC-15 agenda item will be reviewed by the 38 member states of the APT. Following approval by the APT members, the results will be known as APT Common Proposals and they will be submitted to the ITU as input contributions for the WRC-15 meeting.
Australia’s final position on all WRC-15 agenda items will be determined at the final WRC Preparatory group meeting which is hosted by the ACMA and scheduled to be held in Canberra on the 27th of August. It is possible that Australia’s position on a number of WRC-15 agenda items may change based on the views of other countries and regional groups. The current position on all WRC-15 agenda items can be seen via the following Link

There are a number of WRC-15 agenda items of concern and interest to the amateur service, the main ones being:

Agenda item 1.1 which seeks additional spectrum for International Mobile Telecommunications. The amateur service has a number of secondary allocations which might be affected by IMT applications and given the vast resources of the global telecommunications industry it is difficult to oppose. The output of the APG15-5 meeting was that there was regional support for a number of additional frequency bands for IMT and it was pleasing to see that the agreed bands did not cover any amateur allocations; however there will be WRC-15 contributions from individual countries and other regional groups that cover amateur allocations.

Agenda item 1.4 seeks a new secondary amateur allocation around 5300 kHz. This is a difficult issue for Australia and many other Asia Pacific countries due to the large number of existing users of the band, however Australia supports a small new secondary amateur allocation around 5300 kHz and this positive view was put to the APG15-5 meeting. A number of other regional countries also support a new secondary amateur allocation and those countries also put forward a positive view.

After 3 meetings and many compromises being proposed, a consensus position that gave regional support for a new secondary allocation was not achieved and no PACP was produced. Individual states, including Australia, will submit their proposals to WRC-15 on this issue.

Agenda item 1.18 seeks a new allocation to the radiolocation service for short range automotive use in the 77.5 – 78 GHz frequency band which is a primary amateur allocation. Sharing studies indicate little potential for interference between automotive radar systems and typical amateur activity on that band. The main issue for Australia is protection of its radio astronomy observatories which operate in and around that band. The main concern for the amateur service is to ensure continued access to the 77.5 – 78 GHz frequency band and prevent the short range automotive radar systems from being seen as ‘safety of life’ devices which might limit amateur access to the band at some future time. A PACP supporting a new allocation to the radiolocation service, with some restrictions, was approved by the APG15-5 meeting.

Dale Hughes VK1DSH attended the APG15-5 meeting, representing the WIA, as member of the Australian delegation which was organised and led by the ACMA. The Australian delegation consisted of twenty three people representing Australia’s interests in broadcast, satellite, maritime, aviation, defence, IMT, science and amateur issues. The WIA paid for Dale’s living and travel expenses to attend the PAG15-5 meeting.

The ACMA and Australian Department of Defence should be thanked and acknowledged for their flexibility in accommodating the needs of the community of Australian amateurs by supporting the proposal for a new secondary allocation for the amateur service. The support of the WIA president and boards of directors is gratefully acknowledged.


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