The Eleventh Tripartite Meeting of the Heads of the European Telecommunications Satellite Organisation (EUTELSAT IGO), the International Mobile Satellite Organisation (IMSO) and the International Telecommunications Satellite Organisation (ITSO) took place at the IMSO Headquarters in London, United Kingdom, on 05 September 2019. The meeting was hosted by IMSO Director General, Captain Moin Ahmed and attended by Executive Secretary of EUTELSAT IGO Mr. Piotr Dmochowski-Lipski, Director General of ITSO, Mr. Patrick Masambu and Mr. John Shaw, Head of Operations and Capacity Building at IMSO.
Previous meetings have taken place yearly since January 2008, hosted in turn by each organisation. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the three organisations in 2009, in which it was agreed that they would explore areas where the three organisations could usefully co-operate, save resources and contribute to the development of the satellite industry.
The meeting began with the Head of each organization reviewing developments since their last meeting, in particular in relation to the activities of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) notably the preparatory process for WRC-19 and the agenda items requiring mutual consideration. Also discussed were any developments on raising awareness of satellite technologies as tools for digital inclusion.
Mr. Masambu provided an update on ITSO preparations for its 39th Assembly of Parties including a focus on the future of the ITSO Agreement next year and beyond. Mr. Dmochowski-Lipski presented the outcomes of EUTELSATs 41st Assembly of Parties, held earlier this year including a tabled Cooperation Agreement with Intersputnik. In IMSO’s presentation Captain Moin Ahmed provided an update on satellite communication systems for distress, safety and tracking of ships, with particular focus on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) and Long-Range Identification and Tracking of Ships (LRIT).
Further to individual updates, issues of common interest were discussed, relating to the organisations supervisory roles and the activities of the companies each organisation oversees, respectively, Eutelsat S.A., Inmarsat Ltd., and Intelsat Ltd. Discussions expanded on collaborations that had been made by each respective organisation with the private and public sectors, notably in the areas of capacity-building. Further focus was placed on this issue, with the attendees agreeing to continue their commitment to capacity building initiatives related to effective use of satellite based telecommunications, reinforcement of partnerships and long term sustainability of satellite activities.
They also discussed the co-operation required between their organisation in view of the current climate of rapid evolution in the satellite communication market environment. The meeting reached a consensus that the dissemination of information and sharing of best practices in use and development of satellite-based telecommunication services was imperative for the organisations.
At the conclusion of their discussions, the Heads of the three organisations signed a Joint Declaration to emphasise the importance of, inter alia, effective spectrum management and reliable service maintenance in nurturing the role of satellite technologies in safety, security and disaster management, sustainable development and bridging the digital divide.
In addition, satellite service providers Iridium and Inmarsat each shared a presentation with the Heads of the organisations.
The next tripartite meeting will take place in Washington DC, United States of America at the invitation of ITSO, date to be confirmed at a later date.