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


Media Support Package Delivers Industry Request For Assistance

Hon Kris Faafoi

Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media


  • $21.1 million to completely cut transmission fees for 6 months
  • $16.5 million to cut by 80% contribution for NZ On Air screen content in 2020/21
  • $1.3 million for government departments to purchase organisation wide news service subscriptions

The Government has announced a suite of initiatives valued at $50 million that have been developed with the media industry to help them get through the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This package is about freeing up cash in the short term to assist the industry get through the immediate crisis and dramatic drop in advertising revenue experienced since the start of COVID Alert Level 4,” Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi said.

“The proposals in this package were generated by the industry themselves in a recent series of workshops to identify means of delivering immediate support to the sector. We have chosen the proposals that have a relatively quick impact to get support out the door as fast as possible.

“By cancelling transmission fees we are freeing up cash the media companies can use to help them in the short term. This is in addition to the wage subsidy and other tax measures.

“Initiatives in this first stage aim to provide some immediate relief and allow time for work to be done on longer term strategies to ensure future sustainability in New Zealand’s news media

“The media sector is only the third sector, after primary health care and aviation, to receive a specific pool of funding over and above the wage subsidy to help it get through the COVID-19 crisis.

“This support reflects the essential role media play at this time in delivering access to reliable and up to date news coverage and keeping New Zealanders connected while in lockdown.

“There is evidence New Zealanders are turning to trusted news sources in record numbers at this time so it is critical the media is supported to keep doing the great job they have been doing.

“We will continue to work with media organisations to make sure assistance is targeted and appropriate.

“However, I want to be very clear that this first phase of support alone will not be sufficient to see the sector through a prolonged period of restrictions and reduced advertising. A second package of support is being developed and will be submitted for the COVID-19 budget discussions in May,” Minister Faafoi said.

Full details of the package are:

- $20.5 million to cut 100% of Kordia TV/FM transmission fees for 6 months

- $600,000 to cut 100% of RNZ AM transmission fees for 6 months

- $16.5 million to reduce, by 80%, media organisations’ NZ On Air content contribution fees for the 2020/21 financial year.

- $1.3 million to purchase central government news media subscriptions in advance for the 2020/21 financial year and encouraging Crown entities to increase their uptake of news media subscriptions.

- $11.1 million for specific targeted assistance to companies as and when needed.

- Commitment to build on the Local Democracy Reporting pilot as part of longer term support


Where can people find more information on these support measures?

Information will be made available on the Ministry for Culture and Heritage website. Officials are working quickly to refine the details and will continue to update information on the website as it is finalised. Any media organisations paying for transmission costs through other providers should contact the Ministry for further information.

Who should media outlets contact about getting the support?

Officials are working quickly to refine details of the support and how to access it. As soon as the process is finalised, the Ministry for Culture and Heritage will advise the sector. In the first instance, media outlets should contact the Ministry via

What is the process to access support?

The Ministry for Culture and Heritage is working closely with NZ On Air and other government agencies to refine and finalise the process for accessing support.

As soon as we have all aspects of this process finalised, we will advise the sector. If your organisation wish to be kept advised of updates, please provide contact details to

How do media outlets find out if they are eligible?

Any organisation already paying transmission fees via Kordia and RNZ will be eligible for government payment of those fees for 6 months from May 2020. Organisations paying transmissions fees to other entities should contact the Ministry to determine if they are eligible.

There are eligibility criteria for government support toward NZ on Air content contribution fees and subscription spend. Applicants will be required to provide evidence of the following to the Ministry for Culture and Heritage for assessment, alongside Treasury:

- the impact of COVID-19 on their business

- the steps they have taken as a business to ensure their viability through the COVID-19 response period

The process for supply of this information and the detail required within it, are still being finalised. It will be made available as soon as possible via the Ministry of Culture and Heritage website.

Is there a deadline for signalling an organisation’s wish to receive support?

Officials are working to finalise the implementation and administration details. The Ministry will provide further details to media organisations shortly. If your organisation would like to ensure you receive updates, please provide contact details to

When will support be available?

Funding costs for RNZ and Kordia will be implemented immediately and will apply from 1 May for six months.

Upfront payments for subscriptions will be made from mid-May.

Those organisations who are eligible for the reduction of the 2020/2021 financial year NZ on Air content contribution fees due in July, September and December will be able to plan knowing those fees have been significantly reduced.

The funds set aside for additional support to the sector will be available as soon as the application process has been finalised.

How long will the support last?

Transmission cost funding will be for six months and can be reviewed as necessary. Other initiatives are likely to be in place for 12 months.

The NZ on Air funded content and centralised government uptake of media subscriptions are likely to be in place for 12 months.

What is the Local Democracy Reporting project?

The LDR is a joint project between RNZ, NZ On Air and the Newspaper Publishers Association and its 12 month pilot has funded eight local democracy reporters who are based in regional newsrooms affiliated with the Newspaper Publishers’ Association.

The LDR reporters focus exclusively on stories about publicly appointed or elected officials or organisations, such as local councils, community boards and district health boards.

Areas chosen for the pilot were Northland, South Auckland, Rotorua, Kawerau, Tairāwhiti/Gisborne, Whakatane and elsewhere on the East Coast, as well as Wairarapa, Marlborough and the West Coast.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Problems The Pandemic Is Causing For Big Oil

Chances are, climate change won’t kill you overnight, and that’s got to be significant. Yet while we were all in lockdown listening to the birdsong, it was hard to avoid the conclusion that if governments can up-end the economy for an unexpected reason – the coronavirus – surely, we can act just as decisively to counter the known threat that climate changes poses to planetary survival.
Currently, those twin threats from Covid-19 and climate change are converging: on the extent of oil production... More>>


National: $4 Billion Investment To End Wellington’s Congestion Woes

A National Government will invest another $4 billion in transport infrastructure across Wellington, igniting the economy and delivering the congestion-busting solutions the region has long been crying out for, National Party Leader Judith Collins says. ... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Virtues (and Fluffed Opportunities) Of The Operation Burnham Report

One unspoken rule of thumb in any official public inquiry is : whatever you do, don’t conclude you were made to listen to “a litany of lies” even if the evidence of a deliberate cover-up is right there under your nose. In that respect, the report ... More>>


Office Of The Speaker: Parliament Is Revamping Its Rules

Today, the Standing Orders Committee’s report on the review of Standing Orders was presented to the House. The Speaker of the House, the Rt Hon Trevor Mallard, chairs the committee. He said today that the 2020 review will make our rules more ... More>>

Economy: Investing In The Tourism Sector’s Recovery

More than $300 million in funding has been approved to protect strategic tourism businesses, drive domestic tourism through regional events and lift digital capability in the tourism industry, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. A $400 million ... More>>


National On MP Bill: Waka-Jumping Repeal Bill Passes First Reading

The Electoral (Integrity Repeal) Amendment Bill has passed its first reading, marking one step closer to Parliament getting rid of NZ First’s ‘waka-jumping’ legislation, National List MP David Carter says. “I’d like to thank the Greens for voting ... More>>


Your Vote 2020: Bringing Election Coverage To Viewers Across TVNZ Channels And Platforms

As New Zealand gets ready to head to the ballot box this September, 1 NEWS is bringing voters comprehensive coverage and analysis of this year’s General Election. TVNZ’s coverage will draw on the depth of experience held across the 1 NEWS team, says Graeme ... More>>

Economy: 30% Believe Households Worse Off, 298,000 Expect To Lose Jobs

64% of New Zealanders feel the economic position of their households is the same or better than a year ago – and 30% think it is worse or much worse, while 298,000 think they will lose their jobs in the next 12 months. Households’ perceptions ... More>>

State Services Commission: Findings Of Investigation Into COVID-19 Active Cases Privacy Breach

Deputy State Services Commissioner Helene Quilter has today announced the findings of an investigation into a breach of privacy regarding sensitive personal information. The investigation looked into who or what caused the disclosure of the information, ... More>>

International Security: New Zealand Suspends Extradition Treaty With Hong Kong

The New Zealand Government has suspended its extradition treaty with Hong Kong and made a number of other changes in light of China’s decision to pass a national security law for Hong Kong, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says. More>>


Energy: 100% Renewable Electricity Grid Explored With Pumped Storage ‘battery’

The Government is taking a significant step toward its goal for 100% renewable electricity generation in a move that could be a game changer for consumers and the creation of a low-emissions economy, Energy & Resources Minister Megan Woods said. ... More>>






InfoPages News Channels