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NZ-made programmes lowest since charter introduced

8 May 2007

NZ-made programmes lowest since charter introduced

The latest New Zealand On Air local content television survey, showing that the number of hours of New Zealand programmes on TV One and 2 continued to decline last year, is an indictment of current broadcasting policy, Green Party Broadcasting Spokesperson Sue Kedgley says.

Total local content hours on TV One, 2 and 3 was down from a total of 6455 hours in 2005 to 6061 last year. On TV2 the percentage of locally made programmes screened between 6am and midnight declined by 3 percent, bringing it to a low of only 19.8 percent.

"One has to question how a channel that screens 80 percent overseas programmes can call itself a public service broadcaster," Ms Kedgley says.

"TV2 has become almost indistinguishable from any other commercial television channel. The whole point of having a state broadcaster is to reflect New Zealand to New Zealanders, not to show the same incessant diet of foreign programming that is already available on commercial TV.

"When the Charter was introduced in 2003, we were told it was going to usher in a new era of more quality local programming and reflect New Zealand to New Zealanders.

"However, the reality is quite different. Since 2002, the year before the charter was introduced, local content on TV One has dropped 7 percent and on TV2, 5 percent.

"This shows the amount of New Zealand made local content has continued to decline. Clearly, TVNZ is not taking its Charter seriously and is continuing to put commercial goals ahead of public service. It's time to admit that the TVNZ Charter is not working.

"We are lagging way behind other countries when it comes to providing local programming. Most Western countries have local content quotas of around 80 percent."


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