Telecom - Commission Letter addressed to Stan Thompson (Northwestel Inc.)
Ottawa, 10 August 2022
Our reference: 8000-N1-202204923
Chief Financial Officer & Vice-President
Northwestel Inc. (Northwestel)
3rd Floor, 301 Lambert Street
Whitehorse, Yukon - Y1A 4Y4
RE: Telesat Anik F2 Matters
On 13 July 2022, Commission staff became aware of a technical issue that Telesat satellite Anik F2 is experiencing that may affect communications and will shorten the service life of the satellite.
In order to obtain additional information on the impact on Northwestel of the Anik F2 technical issue, Commission staff issued requests for information (RFI) to Northwestel on 22 July 2022. Given that the Anik F2 situation had not yet been disclosed to the public as of that date, Commission staff issued those RFIs under confidential cover letter.
Subsequently, on 29 July 2022, Northwestel responded to Commission staff’s RFIs. Given that the Anik F2 technical issue had not yet been disclosed to the public, Northwestel submitted its responses in confidence.
On 5 August 2022, Telesat disclosed to the public, via conference call during which it reported financial results, the technical issues affecting its Anik F2 satellite.
In light of Telesat’s public disclosure of the Anik F2 technical issues, and given the potential impact to customers of Northwestel’s telecommunications services, Commission staff now considers that the information obtained via the confidential RFIs issued on 22 July 2022 should form part of a public record related to the Anik F2 satellite. In particular, Telesat disclosed that:
- As a result of the satellite’s technical issues, services provided via the satellite will be adversely impacted sooner than it had anticipated in 2025 and as early as February 2023; and,
- It is pursuing mitigation measures with its impacted customers.
Accordingly, Commission staff requests that Northwestel:
- Re-file its RFI responses on the public record indicated in this letter (i.e. TEL 8000-N1-202204923), including the original cover letter associated with those responses;
- Designate as confidential any information in its responses that it believes should continue to remain confidential; and
- File abridged versions of any documents where information has been designated as confidential.
Your response to this request is due 19 August 2022.
Commission staff notes that the initial correspondence from staff to Northwestel on 22 July 2022, including the cover letter and RFIs asked of Northwestel, will be added to the public record referenced in this letter.
As set out in section 39 of the Telecommunications Act and in Broadcasting and Telecom Information Bulletin CRTC 2010-961, Procedures for filing confidential information and requesting its disclosure in Commission proceedings, parties may designate certain information as confidential. A party designating information as confidential must provide a detailed explanation on why the designated information is confidential and why its disclosure would not be in the public interest, including why the specific direct harm that would be likely to result from the disclosure would outweigh the public interest in disclosure. Furthermore, a party designating information as confidential must either file an abridged version of the document omitting only the information designated as confidential or provide reasons why an abridged version cannot be filed.
Original signed by Ian Baggley for
Executive Director, Telecommunications Sector
c.c.: Michèle Beck, Telesat, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Date modified: