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TV Targets for 2004

TV Targets for 2004

New Zealand's main free-to-air channels have demonstrated once again, their commitment to locally produced programmes by agreeing to television local content targets for 2004. Chairman of the now year-old Television Local Content Group, former TVNZ Chief Executive Rick Ellis, announced the targets today.

"More than half the programmes on TV One between 6 a.m. and midnight will be locally made," said Mr Ellis, "and on TV2 and TV3, we're aiming for one programme in five. The four genres we agreed at our earlier meetings remain the same – children's programmes; drama and comedy; documentary, information and entertainment; and news, current affairs and sport. We've set targets for 2004 in each of those genres, which demonstrate the networks' commitment to screening diverse, quality home-grown programmes."

The TV Local Content Group is made up of representatives of TVNZ, TV3, the Screen Production and Development Association (SPADA), and NZ On Air.

"As well as working on targets for local content, we see the Local Content Group as a good place to discuss television production and broadcasting in the wider context," Mr Ellis said. "All industry representatives are keen to work together to deliver the best possible programmes for New Zealand TV audiences.

"At our most recent meeting we noted some positive developments, but we also identified some challenges in the year ahead. For instance, on TV One and TV3 the overall content level will be dependent to a degree on coverage of major sporting events. This can fluctuate from year to year, depending on what events are scheduled, and what part of the world they are held in. The Olympics next year will be a case in point.

"We also have to take account of how different the genres are in terms of the way the programmes are commissioned and made. Drama targets may be harder to set and maintain because those series are likely to have a much longer lead-in time than many of the factual and entertainment programmes produced, and of course they're both different from news and current affairs.

"It is good to recognise however, that NZ On Air research continues to show how much New Zealanders value locally-made programmes. This year around 80% of those surveyed said there should be a set amount of local content on free-to-air TV," said Mr Ellis. "New Zealand programmes feature strongly on the list of most watched programmes every week, and focus groups confirm that they're not just watched – they are also enjoyed.

"Television in New Zealand is in a healthy state going into 2004," he added. "The music channel C4, launched in October, has added to the prime time diet, and will contribute significantly to our local content targets. In the year ahead New Zealanders can look forward to a total of close to six and a half thousand hours of New Zealand programming across four channels on their screens." Ends

Additional Information for Reporters

Television Local Content Targets - 2004

TV One: 52% TV2: 19% TV3: 20%

Genre Targets

Children's programmes: 633 hours Drama/Comedy: 355.5 hours Documentary/Information/Entertainment: 2,084 hours News/Current Affairs/Sport: 2,914 hours Total 5,986.5 hours

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