Cyprus Mail

MPs worried local TV stations to face unfair competition

DEPUTIES on Wednesday once again expressed their concerns during a House Interior committee meeting about Greek television channels setting up shop in Cyprus,.

Greek broadcaster Alpha TV is set to begin airing on the island on April 4 and more channels from Greece have enquired into taking similar steps.

Deputies, however, said this would work against Cypriot media as it would face unfair competition.

It would be wrong, they added, to let the mater spiral out of control and could even risk the quality of information and TV aired to the public.

Committee chairman Yiannos Lamaris said “the quality and safe operation of broadcasters need to be ensured by the country from the risk of having the field covered by foreign media.”

“When Greece, with a population of 10 million decides it can operate four TV stations, you realise Cyprus cannot operate with 24 leaving the field open for the rest of the Greek channels to air from Cyprus without even paying what Cypriot-run broadcasters pay.”

Lamaris added the interior ministry and legal service have been called to amend the existing bill for the state broadcaster and to keep the harmonisation provisions for broadcasters so it can be taken to the plenum on April 14, parliament’s last session before it dissolves for the elections.

Greens MP Giorgos Perdikis said “Cypriot businesses are at risk of facing unfair competition from foreign channels, stressing he wanted the law to ensure there was even-levelled competition between Cypriot channels and foreign ones.

The amendment to the bill is something prepared by all parties, he added.

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