The Government will provide 135 million a year to a TV channel
The Government opens up for bidding on the concession TV 2 has today. A commercial TV channel will be offered up to NOK 135 million a year from the state, but must have its main office at least 100 kilometers from Oslo.
The Ministry of Culture is opening up the bidding for commercial public broadcasting on Friday. It is TV 2 that presently holds the license for commercial public broadcasting today, but the channel did not apply for a renewal of the license last August because no state funding was attached at the time.
Since that time, the Parliament has discussed the matter and concluded that it is to be offered money to compensate for the additional expenses the channel is imposed as a result of the demands made.
In the tender, which is released on Friday, the state pledges to compensate for the costs associated with the mission, and that the Government’s contribution will be up to NOK 135 million a year for five years. In total, the channel that wins the bid can therefore receive up to NOK 675 million during the contract period.
– The authorities have for a number of years provided for commercial public broadcasting, but the tools we have used have been outdated and no longer worth the same. The need is no less for that reason. We need a multitude of news media across the country, and we still need a real alternative to NRK, says Minister of Culture, Linda Hofstad Helleland (Conservatives).
50 percent Norwegian language
The Ministry states that applicants must provide a broad program profile to be considered. Norwegian language programs are to fill at least 50 per cent of the transmission time.
In addition, there are requirements for nationwide news broadcasts, Norwegian language programs for children and young people and Norwegian film and television drama.
The applicant who has the best plans for these requirements will be offered an agreement with the state for five years.
100 kilometres away from Oslo
Previously, it was the requirement that the commercial public broadcaster must have its headquarters in Bergen. This has now been scrapped, but it is still required that the contractor must have its main editorial and key newsroom in Norway, and still at least 100 kilometers away from Oslo.
It is also a prerequisite that the content is offered on one linear TV channel and that the public broadcasting content is made available on the internet.
Earlier in June, Dagens Næringsliv wrote that the Ministry of Culture has had meetings with two potential stakeholders on the matter – TV 2 and MTG. MTG Norway includes the channels TV 3, Viasat 4 and TV 6, as well as the P4 group’s radio channels. MTG chief Morten Aas said that they would definitely spend the time and effort assessing the tender when available.
– It would be wrong not to be alert when new opportunities emerges in such a turbulent media market as we face today, says Aas.
The possibility that Schibsted or Amedia is included in cooperation with other players regarding an application is also mentioned as a possibility.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today