Any entity being duly qualified to exercise a public use telecommunications activity (public network operator and/or public use telecommunications services provider), pursuant to Decree-Law no. 381-A/97, of December 30, or meeting the applicable conditions to the establishment and use of private networks set out by Decree-Law no. 290-C/99, of July 30, may, in principle, install and use the radio spectrum means needed for these activities, provided that they comply with all legal requirements - namely the respective licensing.
The licensing regime of radiocommunications stations (or pertaining to the networks where they are integrated), as well as the inspection of the respective installation, are ruled by Decree-Law no. 151-A/2000, of July 20.
In this context, and as far as the Public Land Mobile Service (SMT) is concerned, which base stations ("aerials") have raised the highest amount of doubts and information requests, any entity duly qualified to provide that service, that is, holding a license for that purpose pursuant to the above-mentioned Decree-Law no. 381-A/97, issued by the Autoridade Nacional de Comunicações (ANACOM), within the scope of their competences, as well as of the respective radio licences, when necessary pursuant to Decree-Law no. 151-A/2000 (to be granted by ANACOM), are entitled to install base stations for the provision of that service.
a) In the installation of radiocommunications stations and, namely, Public Land Mobile Service (SMT) base stations, two realities are to be emphasised:
- It is up to ANACOM, within the scope of their legally granted competences, to assign the necessary frequencies to the operation and use of radiocommunications networks and stations, as well as to grant the respective licence for use, when necessary, pursuant to Decree-Law no. 151-A/2000;
- Pursuant to Decree-Law no. 11/2003, of 18 January, it concerns the City Councils the concession of municipal authorization for the installation of support infrastructure for the radiocommunications stations. Pursuant the mentioned Decree-Law it is still incumbent to the City Councils promoting the consultation to the entities which, pursuant to the law, should express opinion, authorization or approval towards the installation.
Therefore, although the operators/providers have requested to ANACOM, when necessary, the licenses to use their radio networks and stations, they will also have to request the municipal authorization.
Thus, these two competences are absolutely different so the "municipal" approval and inspection completely exceeds the competence of this Authority.
In this context, it is also possible that the competent authorities may deny the installation of this type of infrastructures for reasons associated with the protection of the environment, cultural heritage, territory planning and protection of the urban and rural landscape (article 17, no. 2 of Decree-Law no. 381-A/97).
b) The installation of radiocommunications stations and respective accessories, namely aerials, in rural and urban buildings, need the consent of the respective owners, pursuant to the law (article 20, no. 1, of Decree-Law no. 151-A/2000).
c) There are also restrictions, set out in article 21 of said Decree-Law no. 151-A/2000, to the installation of radiocommunications stations and respective accessories, namely aerials, which:
- cannot difficult the access to chimneys as well as the carrying out of possible repairs in the roof of buildings;
- cannot cause harmful interferences to stations that have the right to be protected or to the reception of radiobroadcasting emissions;
- cannot collide with the existing radio tenures;
- must compulsorily have affixed informative signs warning on the risks of said installation.
- International Committee for the Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) http://www.icnirp.de/