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Self-imposed TV Targets Go Up

10 February 2005

Self-imposed TV Targets Go Up

TV One, TV2 and TV3 have once again agreed to screen significant amounts of local content in 2005, and this year Prime TV has also set a local content target. Television Local Content Group Chairman, Rick Ellis, welcomed the networks’ commitments to locally made programmes when he announced the targets today.

"The TV One and TV2 targets, at 55% and 23% respectively, are showing an increase on those agreed last year, and TV3 is maintaining a strong 20%," said Mr Ellis, "When you consider that TVNZ won’t have an event like the Olympics in its schedule like last year, and TV3’s sports coverage has reduced, they’re impressive commitments.

“And Prime TV’s first year target of 5.5% is another indication that its management are serious about being a strong performer on the New Zealand television landscape. Prime has already been screening locally made programmes, but this is the first year they’ve actually committed to a minimum level. With the support of some NZ On Air funding, Prime is looking to grow the local component of its on screen line-up.”

The Television Local Content Group – made up of representatives of TVNZ, TV3, Prime TV, the Screen Production and Development Association (SPADA), and NZ On Air – sets targets in four genres: children's programmes; drama and comedy; documentary, information and entertainment; and news, current affairs and sport.

The results are measured in NZ On Air’s annual Local Content Report, with the 2004 figures due out towards the end of next month.

"Over the past two years we’ve found the Local Content Group has provided a useful forum for addressing television production and broadcasting in the wider context, as well as a vehicle to agree and monitor the targets," Mr Ellis said. "The members are enthusiastic about providing the best possible outcomes for New Zealand audiences.

"Our meetings give us the opportunity to discuss the challenges the targets present, and how we can best deal with the specific issues facing each genre. Drama and comedy targets, for instance, can be more difficult to set than those for news or sports coverage because of the differences in the way they’re commissioned and the lead-times they need for production,” he said.

“The year ahead promises a local content total approaching 7,000 hours across the free-to-air channels, with the lion’s share in the news, current affairs and sport genre. There is no doubt it is shaping up as an interesting year in that area, but it’s also looking exciting across all genres, with TVNZ promising more drama and comedy, and music channel C4 increasing its broadcast hours, and therefore its New Zealand content.

" NZ On Air research shows that 85% of those surveyed say there should be a set amount of local content on free-to-air TV," said Mr Ellis. "It also concludes that New Zealanders watch local programmes, and they like them.”

Additional Information for Reporters

Television Local Content Targets - 2005

TV One: 55% TV2: 23% TV3: 20% Prime TV: 5.5%

Genre Targets

Children's programmes: 636 hours Drama/Comedy: 438 hours Documentary/Information/Entertainment: 2,653 hours News/Current Affairs/Sport: 3,110.8 hours Total 6,837.8 hours

ENDS

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