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Reporting Requirements for U.S. Providers of International Services; 2016 Biennial Review of Telecommunications Regulations

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AGENCY:

Federal Communications Commission.

ACTION:

Announcement of effective date.

SUMMARY:

In this document, the Federal Communications Commission (Commission) announces that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the information collection requirements associated with the Commission's Report and Order, Reporting Requirements for U.S. Providers of International Services; 2016 Biennial Review of Telecommunications Regulations, FCC 17-136. This document is consistent with the Report Start Printed Page 17932and Order, which stated that the Commission would publish a document in the Federal Register announcing OMB approval and the effective date of changes of the rules.

DATES:

Sections 0.457(d)(1)(xi), 1.767(g)(13) through (16), 43.62, 43.82, 63.10(c)(2), 63.21(d), and 63.22(e), (h), and (i), published at 82 FR 55323, November 21, 2017, are effective on April 25, 2018.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Cathy Williams by email at Cathy.Williams@fcc.gov and telephone at (202) 418-2918.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

This document announces that on March 28, 2018 and April 3, 2018, OMB approved the information collection requirements contained in the Commission's Report and Order, FCC 17-136, published at 82 FR 55323. The OMB Control Numbers are 3060-0686 and 3060-1156. The Commission publishes this document as an announcement of the effective date of those information collection requirements.

Synopsis: As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507), the FCC is notifying the public that it received OMB approval on March 28, 2018 and April 3, 2018, for the information collection requirements contained in 47 CFR 43.62, 43.82 and 63.22(h), as amended, in the Commission's Report and Order, FCC 17-136. (The effective date for the amendments to 47 CFR 0.457(d)(1)(xi), 1.767(g)(13) through (16), 63.10(c)(2), 63.21(d), 63.22(e) and (i), are the same as the amendments to 47 CFR 43.62, 43.82 and 63.22(h), because those amendments are directly related to each other.) Under 5 CFR part 1320, an agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a current, valid OMB Control Number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act that does not display a current, valid OMB Control Number. The OMB Control Numbers are 3060-0686 and 3060-1156.

The foregoing notice is required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13, October 1, 1995, and 44 U.S.C. 3507.

The total annual reporting burdens and costs for the respondents are as follows:

OMB Control Number: 3060-0686.

OMB Approval Date: March 28, 2018.

OMB Expiration Date: March 31, 2021.

Title: International Section 214 Process and Tariff Requirements—47 CFR 63.10, 63.11, 63.13, 63.18, 63.19, 63.21, 63.22, 63.24, 63.25 and 1.1311.

Form No.: International Section 214—New Authorization; International Section 214 Authorization—Transfer of Control/Assignment; International Section 214—Special Temporary Authority and International Section 214—Foreign Carrier Affiliation Notification.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved information collection.

Respondents: Business or other for-profit.

Number of Respondents: 528 respondents; 792 responses.

Estimated Time per Response: 1-20 hours.

Frequency of Response: On occasion reporting requirement, Quarterly reporting requirement, Recordkeeping requirement and third party disclosure requirement.

Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The Commission's statutory authority for this information collection under sections 1, 4(i), 4(j), 10, 11, 201-205, 208, 211, 214, 218, 219, 220, 303(r), 309, 310, 403 and 571 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), 154(j), 154(j), 160, 161, 201-205, 208, 211, 214, 218, 219, 220, 303(r), 309, 310, 403 and 571.

Total Annual Burden: 3,152 hours.

Annual Cost Burden: $752,400.

Privacy Act Impact Assessment: No impact(s).

Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: The Commission has not granted assurances of confidentiality to those parties submitting the information, except for the list or routes required under 47 CFR 63.22(h) which the Commission will treat as not routinely available for public inspection. In all the other cases where a respondent believes information requires confidentiality, the respondent can request confidential treatment under Section 0.459 of the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 0.459.

Needs and Uses: The information will be used by the Commission staff in carrying out its duties under the Communications Act. The information collections pertaining to part 63 are necessary largely to determine the qualifications of applicants to provide common carrier international telecommunications service under section 214 of the Communications Act, 47 U.S.C. 214, including applicants that are, or are affiliated with, foreign carriers, and to determine whether and under what conditions the authorizations are in the public interest, convenience, and necessity. The information collections are also necessary to maintain effective oversight of U.S. international carriers generally.

The frequency of filing applications pursuant to Sections 214 will be determined largely by the applicant seeking to provide U.S. international common carrier service under section 214 of the Communications Act, 47 U.S.C. 214. Carriers will also determine largely the frequency of filing under the other rules included in this collection, with the exception of the quarterly reports required of certain carriers under 47 CFR 63.10(c) and the list of routes for which a facilities-based international service provider must make a one-time filing and update as necessary under 47 CFR 63.22(h). If the collections are not conducted or are conducted less frequently, applicants will not obtain the authorizations necessary to provide telecommunications services, and the Commission will be unable to carry out its mandate under the Communications Act of 1934. In addition, without the information collections, the United States would jeopardize its ability to fulfill the U.S. obligations as negotiated under the World Telecommunications Organization (WTO) Basic Telecom Agreement because these collections are imperative to detecting and deterring anticompetitive conduct. They are also necessary to preserve the Executive Branch agencies' and the Commission's ability to review foreign investments for national security, law enforcement, foreign policy, and trade concerns. Regarding 47 CFR 63.11, carriers determine largely when to notify the Commission of planned investments by or in foreign carriers. If the information is not collected by the Commission, we will not be able to prevent carriers that control bottleneck facilities in foreign countries from using those bottlenecks to discriminate against unaffiliated U.S. carriers.

OMB Control No.: 3060-1156.

OMB Approval Date: April 3, 2018.

OMB Expiration Date: April 30, 2021.

Title: 47 CFR 43.82, Annual International Circuit Capacity Reports.

Form No.: N/A.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved information collection.

Respondents: Business or other for profit.

Number of Respondents: 65 respondents; 185 responses.

Estimated Time per Response: 1-14 hours.

Frequency of Response: Annual reporting requirement.

Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The Start Printed Page 17933Commission's statutory authority for this information collection under Sections 1, 4(i), 4(j), 11, 201-205, 214, 219-220, 303(r), 309, and 403 of the Communications Act as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), 154(j), 161, 201-205, 214, 219-220, 303(r), 309, and 403, the Cable Landing License Act of 1921, 47 U.S.C. 34-39, and 3 U.S.C. 301.

Total Annual Burden: 1,085 hours.

Annual Cost Burden: $2,400.

Privacy Act Impact Assessment: No impact(s).

Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: In general, there is no need for confidentiality with this collection of information. The Commission, however, will allow filing entities to seek confidential treatment of their data.

Needs and Uses: The uses to which the Commission puts the information from the annual circuit capacity report, and the Registration Form are as follows:

(a) Annual Circuit Capacity Reports [Section 43.82(a)]

The circuit capacity reports are comprised of two parts. First, licensees of a submarine cable extending between the United States and a foreign point as of December 31 of the reporting period report the available capacity and planned capacity of the cable—the cable operators report. Second, each cable landing licensee and common carrier that holds capacity on the U.S. end of a submarine cable extending between the United States and a foreign point as of December 31 of the reporting period (“capacity holders”) reports its available capacity on the U.S. end of every submarine cable between the United States and any foreign point on which it holds capacity as of that date—the capacity holders report. A holding of capacity is an interest in the U.S. end of an international submarine cable through cable ownership, an indefeasible right of use (IRU), or an inter-carrier lease (ICL).

The Commission uses the circuit capacity data for such purposes as analyzing international transport markets in merger reviews. More importantly, these data are essential for our national security and public safety responsibilities in regulating communications, an important linchpin of the Commission's statutory authority. Submarine cables are critical infrastructure and the circuit capacity data are important for the Commission's contributions to the national security and defense of the United States. The Commission uses the data, for example, to have a complete understanding of the ownership and use of submarine cable capacity and to assist in the protection, restoration, and resiliency of the infrastructure during national security or public safety emergencies, such as hurricanes. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) filed comments stating that it also finds this information to be critical to its national and homeland security functions, and states that this information, when combined with other data sources, is used to protect and preserve national security and for its emergency response purposes.

There are no alternative reliable third party commercial sources for the reported data. Although some sources collect general capacity information from cable owners, neither the FCC nor DHS has found any alternative sources for capacity holder data. Commercial source data may include capacity information, but the data are not verified by company officials and do not include capacity holder data. Although the Commission obtains the ownership and location of individual cables through the licensing process, distribution of a cable's capacity among providers is not required to be reported under our current submarine cable licensing rules and is provided only annually through the Circuit Capacity Reports. Further, the Commission's licensing rules do not require an applicant to include the entities that have acquired capacity on the cable through an IRU or ICL.

(b) Registration Form [Section 43.82(b)]

The Registration Form provides basic information about the filing and about the entity itself—such as address, phone number, email address, and the international Section 214 authorizations and cable landing licenses held by the filer. This information will assist in keeping track of who holds international circuit capacity and how to contact them. The Registration Form also includes a certification by the filing entity to certify the accuracy and completeness of its report. The Registration Form provides the means by which the filing entity may request confidential treatment of the data filed in the report.

(c) Filing Manual [Section 43.82(c)]

The Filing Manual sets forth instructions on how to file the reports.

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Federal Communications Commission.

Marlene Dortch,

Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 2018-08570 Filed 4-24-18; 8:45 am]

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