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The time-harmonic electromagnetic scattering or radiation problem is considered. The singular value decomposition (SVD) is applied to the radiation operator that maps the set of electric and magnetic currents defined on the surface of an inhomogeneous object onto the set of the far-fields scattered (or radiated) from this object. The SVD yields orthonormal bases for both sets. Because the radiation operator is compact and regularizing, it is demonstrated that the far-field calculated from the series expansions of the currents on these bases converges exponentially fast to the exact one if a sufficient number of terms is considered in these series. This number is closely related to the degrees of freedom that characterize the far-field. The latter can be computed from a reduced number of unknowns in the discretized integral equation that links electric and magnetic surface currents by writing it in the new currents bases. Also, it allows the reduction of the far-field in a given angular sector. The numerical complexity of this technique is addressed, and 2D numerical examples are presented that illustrate its potentialities.