The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) is the international body that sets the regulations for telecommunications.

As radio waves know no boundaries, international coordination is essential to allow effective use of the spectrum. The ITU administers the band plans that allocate the radio spectrum from DC to light for broadcasting, aviation, marine, commercial, governmental, and other services, including amateur radio.

  Canada and other nations base their regulations on the international regulations set by the ITU. Every three to four years, the ITU convenes a World Radio Conference (WRC) to review potential band plan changes to accommodate changing needs and new technologies. 

World Radio Conferences are attended by official delegations from virtually all of the 192 member countries.  National delegations vary in size and focus on areas of national interest such as broadcasting, domestic networks and other commercial interests.

The agenda for the next WRC is determined at the previous conference to give each country time to consult and determine its position on the issues.  Preparatory meetings (such as CITEL for the Americas) give countries the opportunity to work together to develop support and agreement on regional or industry-focused positions on the agenda items.   

Canada is respected within the international community as a consensus builder, giving the Canadian delegation credibility among many third world countries. Canada is one of the few countries that has long recognized the value of including a dedicated amateur representative on its delegation to give ham radio full-time attention.

This is very important when amateur radio matters are on the agenda, as many countries may not fully understand why valuable frequencies should be given to hams instead of generating license fees if used for commercial purposes.

Without funding for travel expenses, ham radio matters would be just one of many issues the other members of the Canada delegation would have to cover.