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The BC wants to offer separate licenses for digital broadcasting in the multiplex and to limit the right to use the slot to 5 years

09 October 2020
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The Broadcasting Council (BC) wants to obtain the right to issue the digital broadcasting license to media service providers for a term of five years instead of nine – the term of the regular broadcasting license. On October 1, the BC members approved a draft law that is to be sent to the specialized parliamentary commission for promotion and approval in the plenum.

According to the document approved by the BC, “the application of the Code of Audiovisual Media Services showed a legislative gap regarding the multiplex provider.” Thus, the BC wants to supplement the legislation in the field with the notions of multiplex authorization and permit to use a multiplex slot. It is proposed that acts regarding the use of slots should be issued by the BC. The BC members also want to issue the multiplex authorization, which is a permissive act allowing the multiplex provider to manage its own electronic communications network through which the digital signal is made. Currently, the digital multiplex is provided by the state-owned company Radiocomunicatii.

As for how long a slot can be used, the BC finds that the permit to use a multiplex slot should be granted for one term of five years. The broadcasting license is normally granted to a media service provider for nine years.

At the same time, the BC proposes the media service providers who own a multiplex slot not to have the right to participate in the competition to obtain another slot for the same television or radio station. The fee for a permit to use a multiplex slot is estimated at 3,000 lei.

The BC President Dragos Vicol has recently spoken about his intention to introduce new elements into legislation in an interview for Media Azi. “We will keep insisting that activity in the multiplex should start in no more than three months after obtaining the right to broadcast, given that we have cases when some TV stations won the contest but, unfortunately, don’t broadcast for a long time and thus don’t let others get into the multiplex,” Dragos Vicol said.

Currently, media service providers intending to broadcast in the digital multiplex participate in contests organized by the BC, in which they are granted the right to use slots by the vote of the BC members.

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