Written Answers. - Independent Television Service.

Pádraic McCormack

Question:

15 Mr. McCormack asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands the proposals, if any, she has for the development of the independent television sector; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [19682/98]

Under the Radio and Television Act, 1988, the Independent Radio and Television Commission has the statutory function of arranging for the provision of one independent television service. As the Deputy will be aware, TV3 came on air on 20 September last.

My proposals for broadcasting legislation are designed to provide for a new statutory structure for the regulation from a broadcasting perspective of broadcasting services across all delivery platforms including digital terrestrial television, cable and MMDS and satellite. My intention is that potential broadcasters and content providers will have the opportunity to experiment and to develop services which will provide a varied menu of television services with broad or niche appeal.