Brazil- Multimedia Communications Services


Editor’s Note:


The following information is adapted from ITU Trends in Telecommunications Reform – 2004/05:  Licensing in an Era of Convergence (Geneva:  ITU, 2004) and from ITU Brazil Mini Case Study 2003 “Brazil’s SCM Licensing Service Category;  A Step Toward Convergence” (Geneva:  ITU, 2003), available on-line at:




On 9 August 2001, Brazil’s national regulatory authority, ANATEL, issued Resolution No. 272.  This resolution established a new licensing category for Multimedia Communication Services, or Serviços de Comunicaçao Multimídia (SCM).  According to the resolution, SCM refers to “audio, video, data, voice (corporate voice) and other sound, image, text and related signals, conveyed, sent and received through fixed telecommunication services rendered by the private sector in the collective interest, on a domestic or international basis and in any format, to subscribers within a certain service area.”  SCM licences, however, do not authorize holders to provide public fixed telephone services, free-to-air television and radio broadcasting, or paid TV services.


The new classification was established to avoid having multiple authorizations for a wide range of information transmission modes.  It replaced the previous licensing classification system, which was based on specific service types, including “specialized limited services” categories of network and circuit services, telecommunication transport network services, packaged commuted network services, and circuit commuted network services.


SCM licences are granted for an indefinite term, without bidding.  The interested party simply submits an application, and if certain minimum requirements are met, the licence is granted. SCM licences are non-exclusive, and licensees are obliged to comply with regulations applicable to all telecommunication operators.  In addition, the SCM provider must comply with terms that clarify the conditions under which SCM providers can transmit video, voice, and data.  These terms differentiate SCM services from those of pay TV operators.  There is no limit to the number of SCM licences that ANATEL may issue.  However, if the SCM provider uses radio frequencies to render its services, it must pay an additional spectrum fee.







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