Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I&B proposes 26% FDI, sourced news for Phase 3 of FM radio

Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni on Monday said a note was being finalised for the Cabinet to recommend an increase in foreign direct investment (FDI) limit from the current 20 per cent to 26 per cent for FM radio. She also proposed allowing Akashvani-sourced news on private FM radio.

Addressing the World Economic Forum's India Economic Summit, Soni said the Ministry was in an advanced stage of considering a hike in the FDI cap to 26 per cent from the current 20 per cent, as recommended by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.

The Ministry's draft note has been sent to other Ministries including Law and Finance, and will be presented to the cabinet after due consultation. She indicated that the third phase of FM Radio licensing will commence early next year.

Addressing a session 'The Future of Indian Media and Entertainment', Soni again stressed the need for greater self-regulation by the media to uphold journalistic ethics since the Government had no intention of state-imposed regulation.

Private FM channels, supported by TRAI and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), have for long been demanding that they should be allowed to broadcast news on their channels. At present, this is permitted only on the channels run by All India Radio.

Source: http://www.radioandmusic.com

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