Malaysian Communications And Multimedia Commission (MCMC) | Suruhanjaya Komunikasi dan Multimedia Malaysia (SKMM)

11 Sep 2023, New Straits Times

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) has dismissed concerns over potential interference to existing telecommunications services due to Starlink’s operations.

“The operation of Starlink in Malaysia is in line with the international framework,” MCMC said today.

MCMC relies on the framework provided by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), specifically the ITU Radio Regulations when making decisions related to spectrum allocation and interference management. 

Satellite services are inherently global, and the Radio Regulations provide a global framework for coordinating and regulating these services, it said.

“It clearly outlines protection criteria including obligations to prevent harmful interference to existing services and the procedures for resolving interference disputes.”

“To date, there have been no complaints of interference. In the event of 

any interference, it will be addressed through existing interference resolution according to national and international frameworks.”

The MCMC was responding to a tech portal’s report recently that, among others, claimed that MCMC did not carry out co-existence study for Starlink before awarding it licence to operate. also said there had been reported cases of interference in other countries such as Starlink’s usage of the 12GHz band causing issues to existing satellite operators. 

“Typically, telecommunications regulators would have to conduct extensive trials and public consultations for any new technology including 5G before it is being implemented,” the portal said.

Starlink started offering its satellite broadband service in Malaysia shortly after it was granted the Network Facility and Service Provider licence by MCMC.

The licence reportedly was issued just days after Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had a video call with Starlink owner Elon Musk and the government had placed an order for 40 Starlink satellite broadband kits.

Starlink has been granted Malaysia Digital status, allowing it to operate here as a 100 per cent-owned foreign entity, MCMC said.

The decision was made based on an assessment of the value and benefits that Starlink will provide. 

“Prior to granting the licence, MCMC conducted engagement sessions with key stakeholders to ensure their concerns and considerations were taken into account,” it added.