Success for Public Broadcasting Campaign in Ireland

The International Federation of Journalists, the world largest group of journalists, today welcomes the support given by an Irish government commission to the defence of public service broadcasting.

Established last March, the Forum on Broadcasting in Ireland, chaired by former Central Bank Governor Maurice O'Connell officially endorsed last Friday the position of the National Union of Journalists of Great Britain and Ireland in relation to public service broadcasting and warns against the development of "a privileged cartel in the commercial broadcasting sector." The report of the Forum on Broadcasting has said that State broadcaster RTE's claim for a licence fee increase is fully justified and called on the Government to introduce measures to guarantee the viability of the station.

"In a context of growing threats over Public Broadcasting in Europe, this report brings us hope that responsible authorities are putting strong arguments to protect and develop public service values", said IFJ General Secretary Aidan White. "It shows that an active involvement of journalists and concerned groups of civil society can bring positive results for public broadcasting. "

The report of the Broadcasting Forum also proposes to create a single regulatory authority and more transparency at RTE. A larger consultation process will take place in the coming weeks, "but we are confident that concrete decisions will be taken soon in order to guarantee RTE's viability and the quality of its programmes", said White.