Canada Mulls U.S. Satellite Radio

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The Canadian government is mulling whether to let U.S. satellite-radio companies sign up subscribers in that country.

The move is widely seen as an initial step toward also letting satellite-TV companies DirecTV and Echostar serve viewers there, too.

Last week, Canadian regulators proposed changes as a way to bring satellite radio to Canada, which is unlikely to establish homegrown competitors to U.S. companies XM and Sirius.

The regulators' moves follow a Canada court decision one week earlier striking down a law prohibiting Canada from subscribers to U.S. satellite broadcast services.

The satellite radio proposal was already under development when the court's ruling was issued, but the analysts reviewing the case predicted the Canadian government will have a hard time justifying the ban on U.S. service.

The ban was imposed to ensure that homegrown providers' do not get steamrolled by much better capitalized competitors to the south.

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