Every three to four years, a World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC) is held to consider revisions to the ITU Radio Regulations.

16 March 2012

Australia is a member state of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the specialised United Nations agency responsible for international cooperation in the use of telecommunications and the radiofrequency spectrum. Australian organisations, both government and private, participate in many of the specialist ITU meetings. The Department manages Australia's membership and participation in the ITU.

Every three to four years, a World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC) is held to consider revisions to the ITU Radio Regulations, an international treaty which determines the use of the radiofrequency spectrum, including the regional and global harmonisation of spectrum. Harmonising spectrum promotes the worldwide efficient use of spectrum.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is responsible for Australia's WRC preparations; it develops and coordinates Australia's position on each agenda item of the WRC. This involves comprehensive consultation with Australian spectrum users including government, science, communications and broadcasting industry representatives. In the lead-up to each WRC, Australian representatives are actively involved in technical planning, domestic and regional discussions and ongoing analysis by policy and technical experts. An Australian Delegation Brief (approved by the Minister for Communications) is prepared for the WRC.

Following agreement and signature of the outcomes of WRC, also referred to as the Final Acts, Australia considers ratifying this treaty-level document at a national level. Once ratified, the Final Acts become a part of Australia's spectrum environment.

WRC-12 was held in Geneva over January and February 2012. A delegation consisting of ACMA staff, government and industry representatives represented Australia. The next WRC is scheduled for 2–27 November 2015 in Geneva. WRC-15 is scheduled to consider, among other issues, spectrum use for terrestrial mobile telecommunications, public protection and disaster relief, satellite, earth sciences and meteorology, maritime and aeronautical, and amateur radio services.

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