Licensing information for Central African Republic - TL

Prepared by: OH2MCN - Veke & TL5A/PA3DZN Alex & 9M6DXX . Steve
Status: June 1998, July '99 links added, 08

Intro: Amateur Radio in the Central African Republic is a routine affair, although obtaining the licence is a lengthy procedure. A licence can only be requested while in the country, and can be obtained through the Radio Communications Section of SOCATEL. Initial paperwork requires the completetion of a standard questionaire about the equipment, frequencies, antenna's, and call sign that you will use. This document will then be forwarded to various ministries for approval, including the ones of Interior & National Safety, Post & Telecommunications, Defence, and the Presidential Security. The latter's approval will be sought for first, all others will follow suit. To obtain those four signatures, expect a waiting period of 2-3 months. The person to see is Mr. Amadi, Chief, Radio Communications Section. His office is located on the 4th floor in the SOCATEL building. Working hours for officials in TL are from 0730-1200/1230-1530 hrs. Best time to reach Mr. Amadi in his office is between 0800-0830 hrs.

Licensing Authority:
Agence charge de la Regulation des Telecommunications (ART)
Direction General
BP 1046
Bangui
Central African Republic

Telephone +236 75 548 292
Fax: +236 21 610 582
Email: artca at intent.cf

Paperwork needed:
To get the application underway you will have to complete a standard SOCATEL questionaire. In a later stage, copies of your national licence and your national passport are required.
The best way to get a license:
Patience.
Price:
The application fee is 4,000 CFA (about US$ 8). The licence fee is 19,000 CFA (about US$ 30). The licence is valid for a period of one year. Renewal fee is less.
Special calls:
You can request any TL prefix you want. Although Central Africa has a history of assigning TL8 calls, where the suffix is formed by the initials of your name, there is nothing that should stop you from being a bit creative! SOCATEL is very flexible in that regard and will assign you whatever call sign you want.
How long before you can operate?
Given that the complete authorization procedure may take up to 3 months, SOCATEL allows you to operate under the assigned call sign the moment the approval of the Presidential Security and the approval of the Director General of SOCATEL have been obtained. To obtain these signatures only, generally takes 3-4 weeks.
License restrictions:
When applying for a licence, simply request operation on "All Amateur Radio Frequencies". That should cover whatever you want to do. As output power, specify 100 WATTS.
Customs:
There exist extremely high taxes on import. Customs Officials will search luggage upon arrival. Make sure you have watertight documentation.
Useful local contacts:
* The Protestant Mission in Bangui. Many American missionairies of this Mission possess an Amateur Radio licence. They meet regularly on 40m SSB.
* Mr. Charles JANSKY, TL8CK. Can be contacted at Entreprise LEPREVOST, Avenue Boganda, Bangui. Tel 61.32.77 Fax 61.19.58.
Places to operate from:
Electricity (and so is water) is erratic at best in most places of town. There is not really a "good" place in that respect. There exists a high hill on the eastern side of Bangui. The further downtown you choose your location, the closer you will be situated to that hill blocking radio view due East. On the west side of town (towards the airport) this hill is no longer an obstacle, and ground conductivity is reportedly the best there (hint for LF DXers). However, accomodation is more difficult to find in that area. Suitable hotels in the city are Hotel Levy's, le Sofitel, and Hotel du Centre. The Sofitel is a 10-story high building located near the top of the aforementioned hill, with a splendid view over the city, the river, and into 9Q, but runs at US$ 120 per night.
Notes:

"Alex VAN EIJK"< vaneijk at un.org >


For travel info see: DESTINATION CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC and SubWWWay to Africa


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