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FCC announces spectrum sharing agreements with Canada, Mexico

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said it has arranged for sharing commercial wireless broadband spectrum in the 700MHz band along the U.S.-Canadian and U.S.-Mexican border areas.

The agreements with Industry Canada and Mexico's Secretariat of Communications and Transportation (SCT) will enable the rollout of 4G wireless broadband service and advanced systems for public safety and emergency response communications, the agency said.

The FCC also made an arrangement with Industry Canada for sharing spectrum in the 800MHz band.

Under the 700MHz arrangements, licensees on both sides of the borders will have greater access to the 698MHz to 758MHz and 776MHz to 788MHz bands. The 800MHz arrangement with Industry Canada will pave the way for completion of 800MHz rebanding by U.S. public safety and commercial licensees operating along the U.S.-Canadian border, the FCC said.

The FCC ordered rebanding to alleviate interference to public safety licensees in the band caused by commercial cellular licensees. The arrangement specifies: how primary channels will be allotted between the United States and Canada; the technical parameters for operation on these channels within 87 miles of the common border; and a schedule for transitioning facilities from the channels needed by the United States to complete rebanding along the U.S.-Canadian border.