The Mexican government is giving the majority of AMs the opportunity to voluntarily migrate to the FM band, subject to the availability of frequencies. According to the decision by the Secretaría de Comunicaciones y Transportes, the agency that sets communications policy, those stations would have one year from the time of authorization to put their FM station on the air and another year to give up their AM frequency and turn in that license.
There are 1,580 total radio stations in Mexico; 854 are AM and 726 are FM, according to the SCT decision, recently published in the Mexican version of the Federal Register.
Perhaps 20% of AM stations may not be able to take advantage of this program because of the lack of available FM channels, particularly in Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey and Tijuana.
The Mexican government aims to give those AMs that move to the FM band the equivalent power level/coverage area.
Perhaps our government can take a cue from Mexico as the FCC pores over all those proposals to re-purpose TV Channels 5 and 6 for AM and FM radio.