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Going digital assistance package announced

Hon Craig Foss

Minister of Broadcasting
24 January 2012 Media Statement
Going digital assistance package announced

Broadcasting Minister Craig Foss today announced details of the Government’s Going Digital Targeted Assistance Package.

“To keep watching TV, all New Zealanders need to go digital by getting Freeview, Sky or TelstraClear,” says Mr Foss. “Nearly 80 per cent of Kiwis have already done so and are enjoying more channels, better pictures and new services. People are going digital all the time and we expect nearly 90 per cent of New Zealanders will have gone digital by May 2013.

“However, the Government recognises that a small group of people could need financial, physical or technical help to switch over. Our Targeted Assistance Package is focused on those most likely to be in genuine need, and will directly help elderly people on fixed incomes and people with disabilities make the transition to digital television.”

To be eligible, people must be watching only analogue television and be either:

• 75 or over with a community services card; or

• Receiving an Invalid’s Benefit or a Veteran’s Pension; or

• Former recipients of an Invalid’s Benefit or Veteran’s Pension who have converted to New Zealand Superannuation.

The package will provide a set-top box, an aerial or satellite dish if necessary, installation, training and access to a technical support line. It will support local businesses around the country, with local installers contracted.

“Digital TV will bring big benefits to New Zealand,” says Mr Foss. “It will allow the use of 4G technologies, which could have economic benefits worth over $2 billion in the next 20 years.”

The package will be launched next month when potentially eligible people in Hawke’s Bay and the West Coast will receive a letter inviting them to contact Going Digital to confirm their eligibility and to opt in to receive assistance.

Further information is available online at www.goingdigital.co.nz.

ENDS

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