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IDA Moves to Make Type Approval Cheaper and Faster for Telecom Equipment

As part of its continual effort to facilitate market access for telecommunication equipment suppliers, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) will simplify its approval processes for two categories of telecom equipment - low power radio devices1 and high power analogue radiocomm equipment2...

Singapore, 1 December 2003 | For Immediate Release

Relaxed Requirements Saves Time and Costs for Radiocomm Equipment Suppliers while ISO Award Marks Quality Service to Public

As part of its continual effort to facilitate market access for telecommunication equipment suppliers, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) will simplify its approval processes for two categories of telecom equipment - low power radio devices1 and high power analogue radiocomm equipment2 from 15 December 2003. With this move, it will be faster, cheaper and more transparent for telecom equipment to be approved and licensed for sale and local use.

IDA's commitment to streamline its application processes and provide world-recognised services was recently validated when its type approval and licence application processes were awarded the ISO 9001:2000 Quality Management System3 certificate. This certificate is awarded for organisations that have implemented business systems that assure quality, consistency and transparency in its services to its customers.

On IDA's move to streamline its type approval processes and being awarded the ISO certificate, Director General (Telecoms), Leong Keng Thai said, "IDA is focused on retaining Singapore's competitive edge in the infocomm sector. To do so, we need to constantly review our processes to ensure its efficiency. By relaxing our type approval requirements and with the ISO award, we're signalling to the industry our commitment to facilitate market access and to provide services that adhere to world-recognised standards and norms. We believe IDA is the first telecoms regulator in Asia to have received this ISO certification."

With the move to relax type-approval requirements, low power radio devices presently under the Type Approval Scheme4 will come under a simplified Equipment Registration Scheme5. The change means that suppliers only need to register the equipment with IDA and declare conformity with IDA's stipulated technical regulations. As such, suppliers no longer have to submit test reports and the manufacturer's declaration of conformity before their equipment can be approved. This allows suppliers to get their product to market earlier, at lower costs and with less hassle.

In addition, high power analogue radiocomm equipment, currently under the Equipment Submission Procedure3, will no longer need to be submitted to IDA for testing prior to type approval. Such equipment will now fall under the Manufacturer's Declaration of Conformity Procedure3. Suppliers and manufacturers can now test their equipment themselves by using accredited laboratories.

Apart from simplifying procedures and improving suppliers' time to market, the move to relax the requirements for high power analogue radiocomm equipment is timely given the current circumstances. The technology for this equipment type has become more matured and standardised. Further, there are more competent commercial test laboratories available to test such equipment.

With the relaxed requirements, savings are passed on to telecom equipment suppliers. For each telecom device put up for approval, suppliers are expected to save between S$250 to S$360 in approval fees for low power radio devices and about S$1,700 for high power analogue radiocomm equipment. The move will also cut the approval processing time by at least half; from 10 days now for low power radio devices to three days and from 10 days to five days for high power analogue radiocomm equipment. Please refer to Tables 1 & 2 in the appended
fact sheet (40.50KB) for a tabular summary of the changes.

For further details of the revised infocomm equipment approval schemes and procedures, please refer to IDA's Guide for Approval of Telecommunication Equipment available on the IDA website ( under the sections "Policy & Regulation", "Telecommunications Equipment Standards & Approval".


Notes to Editor:

1 Low power radio devices generally refer to radio-communication equipment that operate over a short range and at low power levels (normally 100 mW or less) in assigned, shared frequency bands. This includes radio devices such as cordless telephone, alarm system, paging and telemetry transmitter, wireless microphone, wireless LAN and Bluetooth devices.

2High power analogue radiocom equipment includes Land Mobile Transceiver, Trunked Radio Subscriber Unit, Radio Data Transceiver and Radio Amateur Equipment.

3The ISO 9001:2000 standard specifies requirements for a quality management system for any organisation that aims to enhance customer satisfaction and needs to demonstrate its ability to consistently provide products and or services that meet customer and regulatory requirements. The standard is used for certification or registration and contractual purposes by organisations seeking recognition of their quality management system.

4The Type Approval Scheme is a scheme to authorise telecommunication equipment for use and sale in Singapore. Under this scheme, suppliers need to undertake one of the three application procedures before their equipment is approved:
(a)Manufacturer's Declaration of Conformity Procedure: Submit a declaration of conformity and test reports from accredited test labs, or
(b)Recognised Test Lab Procedure: Submit test reports from labs recognised by IDA, or
(c) Equipment Submission Procedure: Submit a unit of the equipment for testing by IDA.

5Equipment Registration Scheme is a scheme administered by IDA for the registration of telecommunication equipment for sale to the public. After registration, no further approval is required from IDA for the sale for such equipment.

About Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore

The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) develops, promotes and regulates info-communications in Singapore, with the aim of establishing Singapore as one of the world's premier infocomm capitals. To nurture an internationally competitive infocomm industry, IDA offers a comprehensive range of programmes and schemes for both local and international companies. For more information, visit

For media clarification, please contact:

Ms Noraizah Zainal Abidin
Assistant Manager, Corporate Communication
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
Fax : 6211 2227

Ms Dulcie Chan
Assistant Director, Corporate Communication
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
Tel : 6211 1999
Fax : 6211 2227