There are six regional telecommunications organizations that play important roles in World Radiocommunication Conferences (WRC):
- APT (Asia-Pacific)
- ASMG (Arab states)
- ATU (Africa)
- CEPT (Europe)
- CITEL (Americas)
- RCC (Russia and some countries of the former Soviet Union)
Decisions at WRCs are made by consensus. It would be impossible for the 193 ITU Member States to reach consensus on dozens of difficult technical issues during a four-week conference; much of the work of developing consolidated proposals and positions is done by the RTOs in the months and years leading up to a WRC.
Each of the RTOs recognizes the IARU as representing the amateur and amateur-satellite services and permits IARU participation in their meetings.