Report of Communications and Informatization Minister Konstantin Shulgan
Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko heard out a report on the suggested draft presidential Decree on managing the usage of the radio frequency spectrum from Communications and Informatization Minister Konstantin Shulgan on 2 October.
The head of state wondered why the new legislation was needed. “We’ve worked on managing the radio spectrum for many years. It seemed to me there were no issues… Did we manage it wrong? Did we fail to distribute it right? Some pay and some don’t? What is new about the situation that the head of state has to take another look at it?” asked Aleksandr Lukashenko.
Aleksandr Lukashenko also wondered whether it is possible to continue working with the current legislation in place. “If we cannot do that, we will return to the matter and will prepare the relevant presidential Decree,” said the head of state.
Apart from that, Aleksandr Lukashenko asked what the recently appointed minister thinks about the situation in the sphere he is now in charge of and what his plans were.
Konstantin Shulgan informed the head of state about the suggested draft presidential Decree. In his words, an absolute majority of the suggested changes deal with the need to bring the legal base into compliance with the practice in order to expedite the decision-making process.
The communications and informatization minister told media after the meeting that the head of state had approved the draft Decree on the whole but certain adjustments would be introduced.
In particular, in line with the draft Decree the State Supervisory Department for Telecommunications of the Republic of Belarus will be able to issue permits to use ship radio stations and will assign international call signs and other identification signals. In 2016 Belarus acceded to the Convention on the International Maritime Organization and undertook to issue all the necessary papers that ships need, including permits to operate ship radio stations.
In view of the campaign to reduce the usage of U.S. dollars in the Belarusian economy the draft Decree replaces prices in euros for allocating and using radio frequencies with prices in Belarusian rubles.
The draft presidential Decree is also designed to improve the procedure of the temporary import of radioelectronic equipment, which is used to prepare and host events organized upon instructions of the head of state or the Council of Ministers. Among other things these measures will allow participants of the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019, foreign persons, who will cover these events, and guests to temporarily import and use radio stations without having to register them and pay for using the radio spectrum.
Apart from that, the draft Decree determines the main international legislation provisions to protect frequency allocations made by the Republic of Belarus. Some presidential decrees on the radio spectrum will be amended and expanded bearing in mind the current practice.
The new presidential Decree will not require the central state budget to allocate additional funds.