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The BCC Was Heard in the Parliamentary Commission for the Media

12 December 2017
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The Parliamentary Commission for the Media heard the Broadcasting Coordinating Council (BCC) about how broadcasters ensure the necessary volume of domestic products and transparency of ownership. The BCC had to explain why it applied tougher sanctions to some broadcasters and was tolerant to others. Following the hearing, the Parliamentary Committee took note of the information presented by the BCC and recommended the Council to continue monitoring broadcasters.

BCC chairman Dragos Vicol, who presented the monitoring report on the compliance of broadcasters with the necessary volume of domestic content, was asked by MPs on what criteria the BCC members based their decision to sanction the broadcasters who did not respect the provisions of the Broadcasting Code. Dragos Vicol said that harsher sanctions were mainly applied to the broadcasters who had less than five hours of domestic content broadcast in the hours stipulated by law. He said that the BCC will be applying tougher sanctions in the future.

Vicol underlined that the broadcasting regulator also took into account local broadcasters, which are the most disadvantaged in this respect. Monitoring took place two weeks after the legal provisions came into force, and broadcasters assured the BCC that the situation is now improving.

Another issue raised by the BCC chairman is the quality of domestic products. Some TV stations are better at it, but they get this result due to rebroadcast programs.

Dumitru Diacov, Democratic Party MP, mentioned that it is important for citizens to watch TV shows produced by local televisions. He emphasized that broadcasters should understand that the parliamentary majority will not change their views on this issue and that they should adapt to legal requirements.

Diacov also said that it is necessary to jointly draw the attention of the Gagauz autonomy to the need to align with general rules, including in the audiovisual field.

Maria Ciobanu, MP from the Liberal Democratic Party, and  Lilian Carp from the Liberal Party were more critical of the information presented by the BCC. Maria Ciobanu said that the public warning applied by the BCC to TV stations is not effective as a means of sanctioning TV stations. Lilian Carp drew attention to the number of hours TV stations broadcast in the Romanian language.

Vladimir Hotineanu, chairman of the Parliamentary Commission, said that it was the first experience for the members of the Commission to examine such a report. The members of the Commission recommended that the BCC return to the monitoring of broadcasters in February and March next year.