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Ch4 Privatisation to be scrapped (Read 558 times)
Dickie Mint
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Solihull, West Midlands
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Ch4 Privatisation to be scrapped
Jan 4th, 2023, 1:15pm
Seen in Broadcast

Michelle Donelan sets out package of measures to ensure sustainability – including potential for in-house production

The sale of Channel 4 has been called off and instead a package of measures to safeguard its sustainability will be introduced – including the potential for it to produce shows in-house.

Culture secretary Michelle Donelan wrote to prime minister Rishi Sunak yesterday setting out her decision, in a letter obtained by The News Agents podcast.

“After reviewing the business case I have concluded that pursuing a sale at this point is not the right decision and there are better ways to secure C4’s sustainability and that of the UK independent production sector,” Donelan wrote.

The culture secretary, who has asked Sunak to respond with any comments by today, has set out a package of measures to ensure C4 remains sustainable in the long-term.

Most significantly these include the potential for it to produce programming in-house for the first time, although whether to embrace this strategy will be determined by the management team at Horseferry Road.

“I intend to legislate to relax the publisher-broadcaster restriction, giving C4 the flexibility to make some of its own content and diversify its revenue more effectively, should it wish to do so,” Donelan wrote.

She added that the government intends to work closely with the indie sector to consider C4’s role in driving investment in producers, “especially in the newest, smallest and most innovative” is safeguarded.

Donelan indicated that the “gradual” move to enable in-house production will take place in tandem with an increase in the 25% quota of programmes which must come from qualifying indies. DCMS may also introduce specific protections for such companies.

“I will also work with colleagues at the Treasury to consider our approach to future requests to increase C4’s borrowing limit beyond the current £20m limit,” she added.

Ch4 obviously have some powerful friends!

And in house production?  Didn't the government force the BBC to put all programmes to tender? Not allowing it to produce in house.
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