47 U.S. Code § 761 - Federal Communications Commission licensing
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(a) Licensing for separated entities
(1) Competition test
The Commission may not issue a license or construction permit to any separated entity, or renew or permit the assignment or use of any such license or permit, or authorize the use by any entity subject to United States jurisdiction of any space segment owned, leased, or operated by any separated entity, unless the Commission determines that such issuance, renewal, assignment, or use will not harm competition in the telecommunications market of the United States. If the Commission does not make such a determination, it shall deny or revoke authority to use space segment owned, leased, or operated by the separated entity to provide services to, from, or within the United States.
(2) Criteria for competition test
In making the determination required by paragraph (1), the Commission shall use the licensing criteria in sections 763 and 763b  of this title, and shall not make such a determination unless the Commission determines that the privatization of any separated entity is consistent with such criteria.
(b) Licensing for INTELSAT, Inmarsat, and successor entities
(1) Competition test
(A) In general
In considering the application of INTELSAT, Inmarsat, or their successor entities for a license or construction permit, or for the renewal or assignment or use of any such license or permit, or in considering the request of any entity subject to United States jurisdiction for authorization to use any space segment owned, leased, or operated by INTELSAT, Inmarsat, or their successor entities, to provide non-core services to, from, or within the United States, the Commission shall determine whether—
(i) after April 1, 2001, in the case of INTELSAT and its successor entities, INTELSAT and any successor entities have been privatized in a manner that will harm competition in the telecommunications markets of the United States; or
(B) Consequences of determination
If the Commission determines that such competition will be harmed or that grant of such application or request for authority is not otherwise in the public interest, the Commission shall limit through conditions or deny such application or request, and limit or revoke previous authorizations to provide non-core services to, from, or within the United States. After due notice and opportunity for comment, the Commission shall apply the same limitations, restrictions, and conditions to all entities subject to United States jurisdiction using space segment owned, leased, or operated by INTELSAT, Inmarsat, or their successor entities.
(C) National security, law enforcement, and public safety
The Commission shall not impose any limitation, condition, or restriction under subparagraph (B) in a manner that will, or is reasonably likely to, result in limitation, denial, or revocation of authority for non-core services that are used by and required for a national security agency or law enforcement department or agency of the United States, or used by and required for, and otherwise in the public interest, any other Department or Agency of the United States to protect the health and safety of the public. Such services may be obtained by the United States directly from INTELSAT, Inmarsat, or a successor entity, or indirectly through COMSAT, or authorized carriers or distributors of the successor entity.
(D) Rule of construction
Nothing in this subsection is intended to preclude the Commission from acting upon applications of INTELSAT, Inmarsat, or their successor entities prior to the latest date set out in section 763 (5)(A) of this title, including such actions as may be necessary for the United States to become the licensing jurisdiction for INTELSAT, but the Commission shall condition a grant of authority pursuant to this subsection upon compliance with sections 763 and 763a of this title.
(2) Criteria for competition test
In making the determination required by paragraph (1), the Commission shall use the licensing criteria in sections 763, 763a, and 763c  of this title, and shall determine that competition in the telecommunications markets of the United States will be harmed unless the Commission finds that the privatization referred to in paragraph (1) is consistent with such criteria.
(3) Clarification: competitive safeguards
In making its licensing decisions under this subsection, the Commission shall consider whether users of non-core services provided by INTELSAT or Inmarsat or successor or separated entities are able to obtain non-core services from providers offering services other than through INTELSAT or Inmarsat or successor or separated entities, at competitive rates, terms, or conditions. Such consideration shall also include whether such licensing decisions would require users to replace equipment at substantial costs prior to the termination of its design life. In making its licensing decisions, the Commission shall also consider whether competitive alternatives in individual markets do not exist because they have been foreclosed due to anticompetitive actions undertaken by or resulting from the INTELSAT or Inmarsat systems. Such licensing decisions shall be made in a manner which facilitates achieving the purposes and goals in this subchapter and shall be subject to notice and comment.
(c) Additional considerations in determinations
In making its determinations and licensing decisions under subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the Commission shall construe such subsections in a manner consistent with the United States obligations and commitments for satellite services under the Fourth Protocol to the General Agreement on Trade in Services.
(d) Independent facilities competition
Nothing in this section shall be construed as precluding COMSAT from investing in or owning satellites or other facilities independent from INTELSAT and Inmarsat, and successor or separated entities, or from providing services through reselling capacity over the facilities of satellite systems independent from INTELSAT and Inmarsat, and successor or separated entities. This subsection shall not be construed as restricting the types of contracts which can be executed or services which may be provided by COMSAT over the independent satellites or facilities described in this subsection.
 See References in Text note below.
Source(Pub. L. 87–624, title VI, § 601, as added Pub. L. 106–180, § 3,Mar. 17, 2000, 114 Stat. 48.)
References in Text
Section 763b of this title, referred to in subsec. (a)(2), was repealed by Pub. L. 109–34, § 2,July 12, 2005, 119 Stat. 377.
Section 763c of this title, referred to in subsec. (b)(2), was amended generally by Pub. L. 109–34, § 3,July 12, 2005, 119 Stat. 377, and no longer relates to specific criteria for Inmarsat privatization.
Pub. L. 106–180, § 2,Mar. 17, 2000, 114 Stat. 48, provided that: “It is the purpose of this Act [see Short Title of 2000 Amendment note set out under section 701 of this title] to promote a fully competitive global market for satellite communication services for the benefit of consumers and providers of satellite services and equipment by fully privatizing the intergovernmental satellite organizations, INTELSAT and Inmarsat.”
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