The "amateur radio service" is a radiocommunication service in which radio apparatus are used for the purpose of self-training, intercommunication or technical investigation by individuals who are interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest.
Traditionally, amateur radio operators were issued two separate authorizations, an Amateur Radio Operator Certificate and a radio station licence. The Amateur Radio Operator Certificate was valid for life and had no fee associated with it, while the radio licence was issued on a yearly basis, and a licence renewal fee was charged
In the interest of reducing unnecessary administrative tasks, Industry Canada has combined these documents into one, the Amateur Radio Operator Certificate. This certificate is the complete authority for an amateur to operate radio apparatus in the amateur radio service.
Effective April 1, 2000, amateur radio operators will no longer be issued a radio station licence on an annual basis or be charged a licence renewal fee. Individuals who were holders of valid amateur radio licence(s) for the fiscal year 1999-2000 will be issued a new amateur certificate which includes the radio station call sign(s) issued to the holder.
This certificate serves the function of both the traditional amateur radio station licence and operator certificate and is the only authorization required to operate an amateur radio station. All existing amateur radio operator certificates remain in force, however, to obtain a new amateur certificate with call sign(s), you require the Amateur Basic Qualification.
For additional information refer to the Amateur Certification – Fact Sheet.