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MOCH: Establishment of Broadcasting Unit

Media Release
3 December 2007

Establishment of Broadcasting Unit within the Ministry for Culture and Heritage

The Ministry for Culture and Heritage has established a Broadcasting Unit within the Ministry to more effectively serve the interests of public broadcasting and New Zealand’s transition to digital broadcasting.

The CEO, Martin Matthews, says in the fast-changing broadcasting environment the Ministry has a significant responsibility to ensure New Zealanders can access a full range of broadcasting services.

“Ministry staff are carrying out work to strengthen public broadcasting. We are leading the successful development of digital television, and we are enhancing regional and community broadcasting.

“With evolving technologies, and increasing choice, it is vital that New Zealand public broadcasting and local content continue to be visible and accessible,” says Mr Matthews.

Until now three separate teams worked on broadcasting policy, digital broadcasting, and monitoring broadcasting agencies which receive public funding. These are TVNZ, Radio NZ, the National Pacific Radio Trust, NZ On Air, and the Broadcasting Standards Authority.

Under the new arrangement the content and scope of the work will not change. A distinct unit, however, will provide a more visible, identifiable presence for the Ministry’s broadcasting work.

“With the growing importance of the Ministry’s cultural role in broadcasting it is an appropriate time to strengthen our effectiveness by creating a focused unit under the leadership of a director,” says Mr Matthews.

Jo Tyndall has been appointed the Acting Director of the Unit in the short term, beginning 3 December 2007. She is currently the Ministry’s Director of Digital Broadcasting Strategy.

The director’s position will shortly be advertised externally, for an initial period of around three years.

ENDS

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