How to get a Cambodian HAM / Amateur Licence.

As you may have read elsewhere on the internet, getting a licence in Cambodia is not especially hard.  That said, with the restructuring of a lot of the government departments, the process has changed slightly.  Here is how to go about it as of 5/05/2015 (When my application was lodged).

Firstly a warning:  the postal system in Cambodia isn’t especially reliable, so if you wish to apply for a licence overseas please ensure you use a reputable carrier.  I applied in person.

A Little About The Regulator / Department & Licencing

In Cambodia, the Department currently responsible for issuing Amateur Licences is called the Telecommunications Regulator of Cambodia (TRC), and they have a reasonable website at http://www.trc.gov.kh.  They offer an English page, however as the page is quite new in general I found it hard to find the forms I needed when I looked.  A quick google however will bring up the current forms on the TRC website, or you can find a direct link to the forms here as of 30/05/2015. The forms are also available in person at the TRC office (which can be hard to find as its located inside the Main Post Office, just ask around for the ‘TRC’ and soon someone will show you).

Amateur licences are a little different in Cambodia. Firstly, the Telecommunications Minister must approve you as a Amateur Radio Operator.  Afterwards, you should apply for a licence for each transceiver you wish to use, and a separate callsign will be allocated.  Like many countries, they will wish to know the following (on Part B of the application):

  • The Transceiver’s Serial Number
  • The Transceiver’s Operating Frequencies
  • The Transceiver’s Power Output (100W is the limit for Amateurs)
  • The Antenna You Wish to Use
  • The Location of the Station

What You Will Need (In person or via post)

  • Your Passport (or certified copy)
  • Your Amateur Qualification / Diploma (or certified copy)
  • Your Current Licence / Callsign Documentation (or certified copy)
  • Your Transceiver’s Manual & Specifications (a regular copy is fine)
  • Part A of the Application Form Completed (this is a letter to the minister)
  • Part B of the Application Form Completed (this is your licence application)
  • Somewhere between $30 & $50 USD.

The Process

I applied in person at the TRC, which made things a little easier, as the administrator in charge was able to help me fill the forms out correctly the first time.  Afterwards, there was approximately a two week wait before the application had been processed.  This is pretty reasonable, as my home country Australia took longer, and in Cambodia the Telecommunications Minister Personally approves your application!  However, for those looking for a holiday style DXpedition (I’m more of an expat), it may be better to apply via post.  Please bare in mind this process could take months, and as not all of the required questions are asked in English in the letter to the minister, so you may have to make corrections and resend the forms.  It is a good idea to thoroughly read the forms and ask questions before sending them off; feel free to ask me, or email the TRC (however I’ve never got a reply).

Although the wait will play on your anxieties, let me assure you that it is a pretty straight forward process and you shouldn’t have any problems.  I was advised to come back in two weeks, and when I did, everything was ready to go for me despite the fact I didn’t bring my transceiver’s manual and they had to look up its specifications themselves.

Once your application has been approved, you will be issued two invoices.  While my Khmer isn’t fantastic, more or less one is an application fee and the other is a licence fee.  They are payable to two different Government Departments, however they are located in the same building.  If you are applying via post, the TRC website suggests that payment can be made via wire transfer as well as many other methods – you should be able to work something out.

And that’s basically how you get a Cambodian Amateur Licence – as long as you have one at home, its pretty straight forward.  If any of this sounds too hard or daunting, please feel free to get in contact with me via email (its on my QRZ Page); I am more than happy to provide free advice, and I guess for a donation I could even sort the whole thing out on your behalf.  Please bear in mind though that I’m not very well off myself, and the TRC is a 6 hour bus ride from my QTH.

Anyway, I hope I’ve been of assistance to the HAM Community regarding Cambodian Licencing in 2015!

73s,

Jarrad

XU7AGA & VK3HXT

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4 thoughts on “How to get a Cambodian HAM / Amateur Licence.

  1. Hi Jarrad,
    This site was a great help for me, I applied one month ago and yesterday I got my xu7 license. I live in
    Siem Reap and my call is: XU7AIA. The set will be a Flex6500. I ordered one straight by Flexradio, but the under the condition, they have to send me the serial number for the application , put that set on the shelf and if I get my license, I buy the set.

    eap

    Like

    • Dear Bert,

      Glad to know the site was of help! I’m heading back to Cambodia around October or November this year (2016). Hopefully we can have a qso or two!

      73,
      Jarrad

      Like

  2. Hi Jarrad – I just found out I have a work assignment in PP coming up next month. Do you think there is any chance of gettine permission and done with the paperwork? I would be taking a kit QRP CW rig, witn no serial number!!!

    Steve JS6TMW / AI6KX

    Like

    • Dear Steve,

      It really depends when you are going. It takes about 1 month to get the paperwork done, as the Minister for Telecoms has to approve your licence, so there is a bit of a wait. That said, its a rubber stamp type thing and all straight forward, it just takes a bit of time! 🙂

      As for the radio, I would not suggest trying to obtain a licence with a home brew / kit transceiver. My advice would be to provide the details (Manual – electronic copy) and serial number of a commercial radio. That will by far be the easiest option, and will ensure the licence is issued in the quickest manner. Once the licence is approved, you will have no further contact with the TRC.

      Cheers,
      Jarrad VK3BL / XU7AGA

      Like

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