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$30 million boost for public broadcasting

19 May 2005

Hon Steve Maharey Minister of Broadcasting

$30 million boost for public broadcasting

Investing in local content and strengthening Radio New Zealand are key features of a $30 million investment in broadcasting over the next four years, says Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey.

"The new funding reinforces this government's commitment to support the development of New Zealand's cultural identity through radio and television," he said.

NZ on Air will receive an additional $17.8 million for local television programming hours, as well as an extra $4.4 million to support the role of local and regional non-commercial broadcasters (previously announced).

The budget will provide greater certainty for Radio New Zealand, with capital funding of $3.75 million to assist with the purchase of its new Auckland accommodation.

Radio New Zealand also receives a funding boost of $2.84 million to enable it to: increase the amount of regional and culturally diverse programming available; ensure valuable audio heritage is archived and protected; provide audio-on-demand through www.radionz.co.nz; and expand Concert FM to the West Coast.

Remote communities will also be able to enjoy better coverage of Radio New Zealand with an investment of $99,000 to improve transmission services across the country.

Steve Maharey said the funding package was on top of an earlier decision to return $11.4 million of Television New Zealand's $37.6 million dividend for 2003-04 as additional funding to implement its Charter.

ENDS

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