PANAMA OFFICIALLY ADOPTS HD RADIO™ TECHNOLOGY AS ITS DIGITAL RADIO STANDARD
Columbia, Maryland – May 19, 2009 – After reviewing several digital radio technologies, the Republic of Panama announced that it has selected the HD Radio In-Band, On Channel (IBOC) system as its official digital radio standard on Tuesday, May 12, 2009.
“Panama’s announcement is the most recent milestone in HD Radio technology becoming a standard around the world,” said Bob Struble, the President and CEO of iBiquity Digital Corporation, the developer of digital HD Radio technology for AM and FM audio and data broadcasting, in response to the announcement. “We applaud the Panamanian government for selecting HD Radio technology and giving its broadcasters an easy-to-implement system that allows stations and consumers to upgrade to digital by leveraging existing analog spectrum and without disrupting current services.”
Around the world, more radio stations use HD Radio technology than any other digital radio system. Over 2,000 AM and FM stations are broadcasting with HD Radio technology [with ongoing operations in Brazil, Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, the Philippines, Switzerland, Thailand, Ukraine and the United States Tests have been undertaken in Argentina, Bosnia, Canada, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Germany, New Zealand, Poland, Romania and Vietnam.
In the official Decree No. 96, the government states that it selected IBOC technology after the country’s Digital Broadcasting Technical Commission reviewed “IBOC (In Band, On Channel); DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) or Eureka 147; and DRM (Digital Radio Mondiale).”
Article 1 of the decree states:
The standards of DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcasting) for Terrestrial Digital Television (TDT) and IBOC (In Band On Channel) for digital radio are adopted in the Republic of Panama, with the goal of offering the users and operators of radio and television services the greatest flexibility and facility in terms of the socialeconomic, technical and regulatory aspects.
The Panamanian government also announced its new TV standard: DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcastings). iBiquity Digital’s English translation is below. [Click here for the official Web site.]
About iBiquity Digital Corporation
iBiquity Digital Corporation is the developer of HD Radio™ technology, which is fueling the digital radio revolution in the United States and around the world. In the US, there are more than 1,900 HD Radio stations on the air plus more than 1,000 additional HD2/3 multicast channels. More than 100 HD Radio receivers are available at retail stores and online and 13 automotive manufacturers have announced the factory installation of the technology, including Volvo, which has made HD Radio technology standard in all of its vehicles. The digital technology enables broadcasters to offer new FM channels through multicasting, crystal-clear sound and data services on both the AM and FM bands – all free, with no subscription fee. Leading broadcasters, consumer electronics manufacturers, automakers and retailers are committed to HD Radio technology. iBiquity Digital is a privately held company with operations in Columbia, MD, Auburn Hills, MI, and Basking Ridge, NJ. For more information, please visit http://www.hdradio.com and http://www.ibiquity.com.
Note: “HD Radio™” and the HD Radio logo are proprietary trademarks of iBiquity Digital Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. The “HD” in HD Radio™ is part of iBiquity Digital’s brand name for its advanced digital AM/FM system. It does not mean hybrid digital or high-definition digital; both of these are incorrect.
(iBiquity Digital translation)
REPUBLIC OF PANAMA
MINISTRY OF GOVERNMENT AND JUSTICE
EXECUTIVE DECREE NO. 96
May 12, 2009
That digital standards for radio and television services shall be adopted in the Republic of Panama.
THE PRESIDENT OF THE COUNTRY,
By means of his legal and constitutional faculties,
That the constituted policies of the State, established in Law No. 24 of 1999, create a legal regimen of stability which assures certainty and security for present and future investments for the offering of the public services of radio and television, and to promote the expansion and modernization of these services, as well as the development of new services that can be promoted by these same means.
That Article 39 of Law No. 24 of 1999 establishes that the National Public Services Authority shall open digital radio and television channels and frequencies for concession, recognizing for the existing concessionaries (licensees) that comply with their legal and regulatory obligations the right to receive one digital radio and TV channel concession for each radio or digital analog (sic) television channel that they have in operation.
That Article 39 of Law No. 24 of 1999 also states that the concessionaries (licensees) will have the right to operate both channels or frequencies for a transition period of no more than ten years, or for a longer period as shall be determined by the Regulating Authority, which will be counted effective on the opening date of the digital radio and television channels or frequencies.
That in the Republic of Panama, radio broadcasting has operated with analog technology; nonetheless, in this sector there are changes existing presently which have permitted the development of new techniques of digital transmission, and which offer enormous possibilities to the country, particularly offering to its users a greater diversity of information, culture, content and interactive services, with greater applications of image and sound quality, among other benefits.
That to change the analog system of radio and television broadcasting to digital affects the value of the broadcasting chain with regards to content, production, transmission and reception, and that it is necessary to technically improve the systems so they can support digital broadcasting.
That new regulation is required to migrate to the digital system, and the adoption of the digital standards for radio and television to be used in the Republic of Panama must first take place, for which reason a Digital Broadcasting Technical Commission was formed.
That the Digital Broadcasting Technical Commission conducted studies, analyses and tests related to the technical, social, economic and regulatory aspects of the various standards existing in the marketplace, with the objective of promoting and protecting private investment in the sector, and the fair and free competition between concessionaries, and to improve the quality of each one of these services.
That, presently, the digital television technologies available on the market are the Advanced Televisions Systems Committee (ATSC) system developed in the United States; Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB-T) developed in Europe; and Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting (ISDB) developed in Japan. This last system was adopted and modified by Brazil under the standard SBTVD-T.
That for the digital transmission of radio, on the worldwide level, there are the systems IBOC (In Band On Channel); DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) or EUREKA 147; and DRM (Digital Radio Mondiale).
That after performing the pertinent evaluations, the Technical Committee presented a study in which it recommends the DVB-T standard (Digital Video Broadcasting) for Terrestrial Digital Television (TDT) and IBOC (In Band On Channel) for digital radio, having considered them to be the most convenient standards for development in the Republic of Panama.
ARTICLE 1: The standards of DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcasting) for Terrestrial Digital Television (TDT) and IBOC (In Band On Channel) for digital radio are adopted in the Republic of Panama, with the goal of offering the users and operators of radio and television services the greatest flexibility and facility in terms of the socialeconomic, technical and regulatory aspects.
ARTICLE 2: The National Public Service Authority, as the entity charged with the regulation, orderly management, fiscalization and technical rulemaking for the operations of the public services of radio and television, shall establish the technical directives and the regulations necessary to fulfill this Decree within a period no greater than eighteen months, beginning with the date of its proclamation.
ARTICLE 3: Once these regulations are created, the National Public Service Authority will open up concessions for radio and television digital channels and frequencies, as authorized in Article 39 of Law No. 24 of 1999.
ARTICLE 4: This Executive Decree will become effective upon the date of its proclamation.
COMMUNICATED AND FULFILLED.
Executed in Panama City on the 12th Day of May of 2009.
MARTIN TORRIJOS ESPINO
President of the Republic
DILIO ARCIA TORRES
Minister of Government and Justice
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