On 21 December, Argentina’s new President issued a Decree (Decree of Necessity and Urgency number 70/23, titled Bases for the Reconstruction of the Argentine Economy) simplifying the conditions to provide satellite services by removing the need to hold an authorisation to provide satellite capacity, defining that the provision will be free and only subjected to a simple prior registration. The measure is part of the 366 articles of a special Decree that declares an economic emergency in the country based on the nation’s macroeconomic situation and sets out urgent measures to contain said emergency.
The measure itself is a positive regulatory simplification, moving to an “open skies” regime for the provision of satellite capacity, following international best practices on the subject. Removing regulatory burdens will result in more services, more competition, and, overall, a market with fewer entry barriers, all of which would mark a step towards social and economic wellbeing.
However, the legal instrument used to adopt the measure has been seen as rather controversial, as it uses an exceptional and transitory tool (the emergency presidential decrees) to define permanent regulations that could have been taken by the Legislative power of the Nation following the standard legislative process. Several stakeholders have announced they will challenge the constitutionality of the Decree before the Courts for this reason and other technical matters regarding the use of emergency legal instruments.
Nevertheless, the President has also presented a Bill (titled Bases and Starting Points for the Freedom of Argentines) before Congress, including 664 proposed articles with several measures aimed at modernising, simplifying, and liberalising several services and sectors across the economy. One of the proposed actions is the ratification by the Congress of Decree 70/23, a move that could ensure skies remain open for satellite capacity in the country, surpassing the abovementioned controversy regarding the manner in which it was adopted, and aligning with international best practices.
To delve deeper into this topic or to stay informed about the latest developments regarding market access and connectivity issues in Argentina and around the world, please contact Sofia Tirini at [email protected] or Juliana Ramirez at [email protected], from Access Partnership’s Connectivity team.