New Amateur Radio Regulations Proposed for Malta

The Malta Communications Authority (MCA) is planning to introduce new amateur radio regulations but the proposal appears to ban use of popular Amateur-Satellite Service allocations

A consultation on the proposed changes was held earlier this year but the final outcome has not yet been announced.

The Malta Amateur Radio League (MARL) say "Most of the proposed changes had been recommended by MARL over the last years."

The MARL response to the consultation -

The MARL have been successful in getting the regulator MCA to agree to a Lifetime license and also HAREC compatibility. It is understood MARL are trying to get an Entry Level License (ELL) at some point in the future.

Some apparent anomalies in the proposed regulations:

  • 29.3-29.510 is being restricted to satellite downlink only. ITU clearly state that 28 MHz band allocation is for both Uplinks and Downlinks. This is confirmed in the 2016 IARU Region 1 bandplan.
  • 435-438 MHz is one of the most popular amateur satellite allocations but the regulations say satellite use in Malta is not permitted.
  • 2400-2450 MHz is also an ITU satellite allocation but regulations appear not to permit it.

The regulations give the wrong name for the IARU - the U stands for Union not League and the IARU-R1 website URL is incorrect, missing a hyphen.

As written the regulations give the impression the use of FT-8 and other popular digital modes may not be permitted because they are not defined on the IARU-Region 1 site. The proposed regulations state:

"a) Licensees shall use the preferred transmission mode established by the International Amateur Radio League (IARU) for Region 1..."

Revision of the Amateur Radio Licensing Framework -

Proposed Radiocommunications (Amateur Station Licence) Regulations, 2018 -