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What Has Marian Been Doing All This Time?

Five months on the job and all Marian Hobbs has delivered is a plan to plan a work programme, National Broadcasting spokesperson Katherine Rich said today.

"As the Minister herself says, telecommunications is an area of rapid and continual change.

"But from today's "work programme" it's apparent that she's been all talk, no action since taking over the portfolio.

"This timetable could have been prepared in December. They are all issues that were obvious before the election - or areas that Labour's been doing a lot of tub-thumping about.

"There are some major omissions. What about Maori TV? What about Pacific Island radio? In five months New Zealand's broadcasting strategy is no further ahead.

"Given that it has taken this long just to get a schedule for action, how much real consultation with interested groups will the slow-working Marian Hobbs actually be able to manage before she decides on broad policy objectives by the end of May?"

Ms Rich welcomed the confirmation that the Government had abandoned Labour's pre-election policy of compulsory quotas in favour of voluntary quotas.

"National has always believed the best results can be achieved by co-operating with the industry, not dictating to them."

Ms Rich said she wanted to know the significance of the possible separation of BCL from TVNZ.

"Marian Hobbs has said they don't plan to sell Broadcast Communications Ltd, so I would like to know why they want to make it a stand-alone unit."


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