There has been some good news for Australia’s broadcast media today, with the Turnbull Government announcing plans that are just another step towards abolishing broadcast licence fees.
As Radio Today reports, the broadcasting reform package is expected to “improve the sustainability of Australia’s free-to-air broadcasting sector”. By eliminating licence fees, the industry would be looking at saving close to $20 million, while helping to ease pressure put upon the industry by unregulated competitors both overseas, and online.
As it stands, the cut is also expected to result in a decrease of almost 94% in total fees that are currently paid to the Government by commercial radio stations.
In a quote to Radio Today, Joan Warner, CEO of industry body Commercial Radio Australia, stated that broadcasters were welcoming of this decision. “We welcome the removal of broadcast licence fees, which will provide a fairer competitive environment and allow radio to invest even more in Australian jobs and content,” Warner stated. “We call on the Parliament to support this package which provides much needed relief for local Australian radio.”
While the plan has currently been announced by the Turnbull Government, it still has to pass through the senate. So at this stage, we can only hope this plan will be approved, and that the industry will soon start reaping the benefits.