The President has approved a comprehensive national policy on
the future management and use of the U.S. Global Positioning
System (GPS) and related U.S. Government augmentations.


The Global Positioning System (GPS) was designed as a dual-use
system with the primary purpose of enhancing the effectiveness
of U.S. and allied military forces. GPS provides a substantial
military advantage and is now being integrated into virtually
every facet of our military operations. GPS is also rapidly
becoming an integral component of the emerging Global
Information Infrastructure, with applications ranging from
mapping and surveying to international air traffic management
and global change research. The growing demand from
military, civil, commercial, and scientific users has generated a
U.S. commercial GPS equipment and service industry that leads
the world. Augmentations to enhance basic GPS services could
further expand these civil and commercial markets.

The basic GPS is defined as the constellation of satellites, the
navigation payloads which produce the GPS signals, ground
stations, data links, and associated command and control
facilities which are operated and maintained by the Department
of Defense; the Standard Positioning Service (SPS) as the civil
and commercial service provided by the basic GPS; and
augmentations as those systems based on the GPS that provide
real-time accuracy greater than the SPS.

This policy presents a strategic vision for the future management
and use of GPS, addressing a broad range of military, civil,
commercial, and scientific interests, both national and

Policy Goals

In the management and use of GPS, we seek to support and
enhance our economic competitiveness and productivity while
protecting U.S. national security and foreign policy interests.

Our goals are to:

  1. Strengthen and maintain our national security.

  2. Encourage acceptance and integration of GPS into
    peaceful civil, commercial and scientific applications

  3. Encourage private sector investment in and use of
    U.S. GPS technologies and services.

  4. Promote safety and efficiency in transportation and
    other fields.

  5. Promote international cooperation in using GPS for
    peaceful purposes.

  6. Advance U.S. scientific and technical capabilities.

Policy Guidelines

We will operate and manage GPS in accordance with the
following guidelines:

  1. We will continue to provide the GPS Standard
    Positioning Service for peaceful civil, commercial and
    scientific use on a continuous, worldwide basis, free
    of direct user fees.

  2. It is our intention to discontinue the use of GPS
    Selective Availability (SA) within a decade in a
    manner that allows adequate time and resources for
    our military forces to prepare fully for operations
    without SA. To support such a decision, affected
    departments and agencies will submit
    recommendations in accordance with the reporting
    requirements outlined in this policy.

  3. The GPS and U.S. Government augmentations will
    remain responsive to the National Command

  4. We will cooperate with other governments and
    international organizations to ensure an appropriate
    balance between the requirements of international
    civil, commercial and scientific users and
    international security interests.

  5. We will advocate the acceptance of GPS and U.S.
    Government augmentations as standards for
    international use.

  6. To the fullest extent feasible, we will purchase
    commercially available GPS products and services
    that meet U.S. Government requirements and will not
    conduct activities that preclude or deter commercial
    GPS activities, except for national security or public
    safety reasons.

  7. A permanent interagency GPS Executive Board,
    jointly chaired by the Departments of Defense and
    Transportation, will manage the GPS and U.S. Government
    augmentations. Other departments and agencies will
    participate as appropriate. The GPS Executive Board
    will consult with U.S. Government agencies, U.S. industries
    and foreign governments involved in navigation and
    positioning system research, development, operation, and

This policy will be implemented within the overall resource and
policy guidance provided by the President.

Agency Roles and Responsibilities

The Department of Defense will:

  1. Continue to acquire, operate, and maintain the basic

  2. Maintain a Standard Positioning Service (as defined in
    the Federal Radionavigation Plan and the GPS
    Standard Positioning Service Signal Specification) that
    will be available on a continuous, worldwide basis.

  3. Maintain a Precise Positioning Service for use by the
    U.S. military and other authorized users.

  4. Cooperate with the Director of Central Intelligence,
    the Department of State and other appropriate
    departments and agencies to assess the national
    security implications of the use of GPS, its
    augmentations, and alternative satellite-based
    positioning and navigation systems.

  5. Develop measures to prevent the hostile use of GPS
    and its augmentations to ensure that the United States
    retains a military advantage without unduly disrupting
    or degrading civilian uses.

The Department of Transportation will:

  • Serve as the lead agency within the U.S. Government
    for all Federal civil GPS matters.

  • Develop and implement U.S. Government
    augmentations to the basic GPS for transportation

  • In cooperation with the Departments of Commerce,
    Defense and State, take the lead in promoting
    commercial applications of GPS technologies and the
    acceptance of GPS and U.S. Government
    augmentations as standards in domestic and
    international transportation systems.

  • In cooperation with other departments and agencies,
    coordinate U.S. Government-provided GPS civil
    augmentation systems to minimize cost and
    duplication of effort.

    The Department of State will:

  • In cooperation with appropriate departments and
    agencies, consult with foreign governments and other
    international organizations to assess the feasibility of
    developing bilateral or multilateral guidelines on the
    provision and use of GPS services.

  • Coordinate the interagency review of instructions to
    U.S. delegations to bilateral consultations and
    multilateral conferences related to the planning,
    operation, management, and use of GPS and related
    augmentation systems.

  • Coordinate the interagency review of international
    agreements with foreign governments and
    international organizations concerning international
    use of GPS and related augmentation systems.

    Reporting Requirements

    Beginning in 2000, the President will make an annual
    determination on continued use of GPS Selective Availability.
    To support this determination, the Secretary of Defense, in
    cooperation with the Secretary of Transportation, the Director of
    Central Intelligence, and heads of other appropriate departments
    and agencies, shall provide an assessment and recommendation
    on continued SA use. This recommendation shall be provided to
    the President through the Assistant to the President for National
    Security Affairs and the Assistant to the President for Science
    and Technology.