The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports. Would it be a good idea for Industry Canada to publicly announce how much money it collects from the mobile wireless industry? That question was put to the heads of Canada’s four national mobile wireless operators in a wide-ranging Q&A with Report on Wireless (see story in this issue). For the most part they agreed that it would be a good idea to mirror what the CRTC does in reporting the amount of fees it collects from the wireline telecommunications industry. Some observers believe that since the CRTC does it for both the telecommunications and broadcasting sectors, Industry Canada should have no trouble doing the same thing for the wireless telecom sector. On face value it only seems fair that the manager (the Canadian government) of a valuable and scarce resource, which in fact belongs to Canadians, would want its stakeholders (the Canadian public) to know how much it is getting for its airwaves. Much like the government reports how much money it gets in lumber or beef exports annually (or as is the case losing because of anti-competitive U.S. tariffs or outright bans on the importation of the product), the same should hold true for the domestic use of a Canadian resource such as spectrum. It shouldn’t make a difference that the resource is sold within the confines of the Canadian border. Peter Barnes, president and CEO of the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association, pointed out at a conference in Calgary earlier this year that the mobile wireless industry pays approximately $140 million in spectrum fees to the department. But more importantly, he said, the amount of spectrum for which they are paying is miniscule compared to the amount of spectrum being used for other uses. If the wireless industry wanted the department to publicly report the amount of money it collects from the industry, then it would only be fair to conduct a thorough review of Industry Canada’s activities. But what would happen if it were determined by an independent review process that the fees the wireless industry pays were not enough to cover the management of spectrum?