Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

TVNZ's Sky Subsidy Needs Explanation

New Zealand taxpayers are giving a substantial subsidy to media baron Rupert Murdoch's Sky TV to deliver a service which only 15% of taxpayers will be able to see, National MP Murray McCully said today.

Mr McCully said TV3 had been on the brink of signing a contract to provide footage of Parliamentary question time for broadcast by Sky TV.

"With considerable set-up costs, extra resources, and all of the expensive requirements which are associated with television broadcasting the service would have involved a significant payment to TV3," Mr McCully said.

"However, at the last minute TVNZ chair Dr Ross Armstrong offered to provide the service to Sky, and TVNZ management negotiated a package which delivered it for free.

"The only people who will be able to receive the service are those in the 177,000 households which have paid a $500 joining fee and a minimum $35 a month subscription to receive Sky.

"So New Zealand taxpayers as owners of TVNZ are subsidising Rupert Murdoch's Sky TV to provide a commercial service which they can only receive on a subscription basis. Many taxpayers will want to know why Dr Armstrong directed TVNZ to enter into a deal like that.

"The answer is to be found in the secret negotiations which Dr Armstrong has been spearheading with Sky TV. As was revealed last week, those negotiations have been heading towards TVNZ abandoning digital plans of it's own and transmitting TV1 and TV2 via the Sky digital platform. The problem is that this strategy would see Sky become what this weeks Listener aptly describes as 'gatekeepers to the digital domain in this country". But, more on that later.

"I understand that Broadcasting Minister Marian Hobbs was kept informed of these developments. Did she approve of this substantial subsidy to Sky? Did she ask whether the board of TVNZ had explicitly agreed to carry the cost of giving this service to Sky for them to sell to their subscribers? Or did she just have no idea what she was being told?

"Personally, I think option three is quite credible."

"I believe Minister Hobbs and Chairman Armstrong have some explaining to do," Murray McCully said.

Ends

A printable formatted copy of this press release will be available on http://www.national.org.nz along with an archive of previous releases.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Uncanny Valley Of Tokyo 2020

For all involved, this year’s Olympic Games have called for a willing suspension of anxiety. For now at least, the displays of skill and agility have been compelling enough to muffle some of the previous misgivings about the wisdom of asking athletes from all corners of the world to converge in one place in the middle of a pandemic, and at the height of a Tokyo summer... More>>



ALSO:


 
 


Child Poverty Action Group: Poverty Burden For Children Increased Due To Government Neglect - New Report

Poverty, inequity, homelessness and food insecurity are among the burdens which increased for tamariki Māori and other children in the first year of Covid-19 - partially due to Government neglect... More>>

Government: Cabinet Accepts Turkish Authorities’ Request For The Managed Return Of Three NZ Citizens

Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Quarantine Free Travel With Australia Suspended

Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today... More>>

ALSO:


NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>



Social Development: Government Initiatives Contribute To Fall In Benefit Numbers

Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the release of the June quarter Benefit Statistics which show a continuing fall in the number of people receiving a Main Benefit... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels