N3 — Mobile Satellite Service (MSS) Provider Licences

1. Eligibility

The licensee must comply with the eligibility criteria as set out in the Radiocommunication Regulations.

2. Licence Transferability

Licences may not be transferred or assigned without a full review of the request by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (the Department), and are subject to the authorization of the Minister. For clarification and without limiting the generality of the foregoing, “transfer” includes any leasing, sub-leasing or other disposition of the rights and obligations of the licence, and also includes any change that would have a material effect on the ownership or control in fact of the licensee.

3. Laws, Regulations and Other Obligations

  1. The licensee and its use of the spectrum assigned in this authorization are subject to and must comply with the ITU Radio Regulations, the Canadian Radiocommunication Act, the Canadian Radiocommunication Regulations, and Canada’s spectrum utilization policies pertaining to the licensed radio frequency bands.
  2. The operation of the facilities and services being provided must be compliant with relevant Canadian laws and regulations.
  3. In cases where the service provider is not the satellite operator, the licensee must have a valid arrangement in place with the operator of the satellite network, or its representative, to use the satellite capacity for the provision of service in Canada.
  4. If applicable, nothing in the issuance of licences to licensees utilizing Inmarsat satellites for the provision of service in Canada, is to be construed as granting the licensees a monopoly on the provision of domestic or international Inmarsat services in Canada. To this end, each licensee must share the assigned spectrum with all other licensees authorized by the Department to use the same spectrum to provide Inmarsat services in Canada.

4. Service to All Regions of Canada

The licensee must make fair and reasonable efforts to provide mobile satellite service to all regions of Canada within the coverage contour and service availability of the satellite or constellation of satellites, or as described in the licensee’s original application.

5. Research and Development

The licensee must invest, as a minimum, two percent of its adjusted gross revenues resulting from the use of this licence, averaged over the term of the licence, in eligible research and development activities related to telecommunications. Eligible research and development activities are those which meet the definition of scientific research and experimental development adopted in the Income Tax Act, as amended from time to time. Adjusted gross revenues are defined as total service revenues, less inter-carrier payments, bad debts, third party commissions, and provincial goods and services taxes collected. The licensee is exempt from research and development expenditure requirements if it, together with all affiliated licensees that are subject to the research and development condition of licence, has less than $1 billion in annual gross operating revenues from the provision of wireless services in Canada, averaged over the term of the licence. For this condition of licence, an affiliate is defined as a person who controls the carrier, or who is controlled by the carrier or by any person who controls the carrier, as per subsection 35(3) of the Telecommunications Act.

6. Lawful Interception

  1. The licensee shall provide and maintain lawful interception capabilities, as set out in the Solicitor General’s publication entitled Enforcement Standards for Lawful Interception of Telecommunications.
  2. The licensee may request that the Minister forbear from enforcing certain assistance capability requirements for a limited period. The Minister, following consultation with the Minister of Public Safety Canada, may exercise his power to forbear from enforcing a requirement or requirements where, in the opinion of the Minister, the requirements are not reasonably achievable. Forbearance requests must include specific details and dates regarding timelines for compliance to requirements.

7. Subscriber Earth Stations

  1. Licensees must obtain the necessary radio licences prior to installing or operating any subscriber earth station onboard aircraft, vessels or other mobile platforms in Canada.
  2. Subscriber earth stations, including those onboard aircraft, are authorized to operate in Canada only. Subscriber earth stations onboard vessels (ESVs) are authorized to operate in Canada and onboard Canadian licensed or registered vessels outside Canada.

    Any roaming into other countries must respect the licensing regimes of those countries. To ensure compliance, the licensee must provide its subscribers with a copy of this condition of licence.
  3. Subscriber radio equipment must meet all applicable Canadian radio equipment standards and, if required, be type-approved or certified for use in Canada.
  4. Additionally, subscriber radio equipment brought into Canada by visitors for use while temporarily located in Canada must:
    1. meet any applicable Canadian radio equipment standards and be certified for use in Canada; or
    2. be type-approved by an administration that is a signatory to the Global Mobile Personal Communications by Satellite-Memorandum of Understanding (GMPCS‑MoU) and must carry the GMPCS-MoU mark.
  5. If applicable, the operation of subscriber earth stations must not cause harmful interference to the radio astronomy service operating in the same or adjacent frequency bands.
  6. Subscriber earth stations must comply with Health Canada’s Limits of Human Exposure to Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Energy in the Frequency Range from 3 kHz to 300 GHz – Safety Code 6 (2015).

8. Reporting Requirements

  1. The licensee must submit an annual report for each year of operation, including:
    1. a statement indicating continued compliance with all licence conditions;
    2. an update on the provision of mobile satellite service, including the expansion of the services provided;
    3. an update on the satellites used for the provision of the service, the spectrum used and the number of subscriber earth stations operating within Canada;
    4. a statement indicating the annual gross operating revenues from the provision of wireless services in Canada and the annual adjusted gross revenues resulting from the use of this licence, as defined in condition 5;
    5. when applicable, a report and description of research and development expenditures as set out in condition 5, signed by a duly authorized officer of the licensee. Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada may, at its discretion, request an audited statement of research and development expenditures with an accompanying auditor’s report; and,
    6. if the licensee is claiming an exemption based on having less than $1 billion in annual gross operating revenues, it must provide supporting financial statements signed by a duly authorized officer of the company.
  2. All reports and statements must be submitted in electronic format by March 31st of each year to the Manager, Satellite Authorization Policy, Engineering, Planning and Standards Branch, at ic.satelliteauthorization-autorisationsatellite.ic@canada.ca. Any confidential information provided will be treated in accordance with subsection 20(1) of the Access to Information Act.

9. Licence Fees

Licence fees are paid on an annual basis in advance, and are due by March 31 of each year.

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