ARCHIVED -  Telecom Public Notice CRTC 98-40

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Telecom Public Notice CRTC 98-40

  Ottawa, 17 December 1998


  File No.: 8085-RP0008/98
  1. Telesat Canada (Telesat) filed an application, dated 13 March 1998, which requested complete and unconditional forbearance from the regulation of RF Channel services provided using Fixed Satellite Service (FSS) facilities, effective 1 March 2000. Telesat's FSS satellites are Anik E1, E2 and C1, as well as the planned F1 and F2 and possible future FSS satellites. The Commission currently regulates RF Channel services over a ten-year study period, which extends to 31 December 2000. Telesat's application was made in light of the World Trade Organization/General Agreement on Trade in Services (WTO/GATS) Trade Agreement for Basic Telecommunications Services by which Canada committed to permit competition in the provision of RF Channel services starting 1 March 2000.
  2. The Commission considered Telesat's application in the proceeding initiated by Telesat Canada - Forbearance Application for RF Channel Services, Telecom Public Notice CRTC 98-8, dated 4 May 1998. In Telesat Canada - Forbearance from the Regulation of RF Channel Services, Telecom Decision CRTC, 98-24 dated 17 December 1998, the Commission concluded that adequate evidence had not been provided to demonstrate that competition would be sufficient to protect the interests of satellite users. Accordingly, the Commission denied Telesat's application for forbearance.
  3. The Commission determined that a transitional regime for the regulation of RF Channel services provided on FSS facilities is required to provide Telesat with flexibility to compete where competition develops, but retains a degree of regulatory oversight since RF Channel users may not have sufficient competitive choice.
  4. The Commission considers that a price ceiling approach may be the best means to provide regulatory flexibility prior to forbearance. The Commission has used price regulation in other cases where competition is developing and the incumbent service provider requires flexibility to adjust to a competitive market.
  5. The Commission considers that it would be appropriate for any price ceiling framework to become effective immediately following a determination in the proceeding initiated by this Public Notice for services to be provided after 1 March 2000.
  6. The Commission is of the view that the currently approved RF Channel rates may be an appropriate price ceiling. Alternatively, the price ceiling could be a percentage difference from the existing rates. The Commission is open to considering a price ceiling level that can be justified based on factors such as market conditions, value of service or other considerations.
  7. Telesat is made a party to this proceeding. Other parties wishing to participate in this proceeding must notify the Commission of their intention to do so by writing to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N2, Fax: (819) 953-0795, by 6 January 1999.
  8. The record of this proceeding may be examined at the Commission's offices at the following locations:

Central Building
Les Terrasses de la Chaudière
1 Promenade du Portage
Room G-5
Hull, Quebec

55 St. Clair Avenue East
Suite 624
Toronto, Ontario
  9. Telesat is to file a submission proposing a price ceiling framework including a price ceiling level. In addition, Telesat is to propose how the Commission should oversee the priority of access to satellite capacity where there is contention among customers. It is noted that the Commission cannot forbear from its responsibilities for the allocation of satellite capacity for the transmission of broadcasting services pursuant to section 28 of the Telecommunications Act. Telesat's submission is to be filed by 15 February 1999, or earlier, serving a copy on interested parties by the same date.
  10. Parties other than Telesat may provide submissions with respect to the price ceiling framework and how the Commission should oversee priority of access within 20 days of the date of service of Telesat's submission, serving a copy on all other interested parties by the same date.
  11. Telesat may provide reply comments within 40 days of its initial submission in this proceeding, serving a copy on interested parties by the same date.
  12. In addition to hard copy filings, parties are encouraged to file with the Commission electronic versions of their submissions in accordance with the Commission's Interim Telecom Guidelines for the Handling of Machine-Readable Files, dated 30 November 1995. The Commission's Internet email address for electronically filed documents is Electronically filed documents can be accessed at the Commission's Internet site at
  13. Where a document is to be filed or served by a specific date, the document must be actually received, not merely sent, by that date.
  Secretary General
  This document is available in alternative format upon request.
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