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Star India seeks liberalised FDI regime for TV news, DTH


Staff member
6 Oct 2013
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MUMBAI: Star India has shown appetite to ramp up its investments in India. If the government removes foreign direct investment (FDI) constraints in TV news and direct-to-home (DTH) sectors, the 21st Century Fox subsidiary will be keen to flow in new investments.

In its response to TRAI’s pre-consultation paper on ‘Ease of doing business in TV broadcasting’, Star India has urged the regulator to ensure a level playing field for foreign and domestic broadcasters in owning stakes in the distribution platform business.

Star said that the cross-holding restriction of 20% in DTH is unfair to foreign broadcasters as domestic broadcasters are able to evade these requirements through corporate structuring, which is out of bounds for foreign broadcasters.

The broadcaster further submitted that there is enough competition in the DTH sector to take care of anti-trust issues.

It further stated that the Competition Commission of India (CCI) looks into complaints pertaining to anti-competitive practices or abuse of dominance issues. “In such scenario, the blanket restriction on broadcasters restraining them from directly investing in a DTH entity and vice versa seems out of place,” Star said in its submission.

“Furthermore, distribution platforms are running their own channels that are not even registered with the central government, but TV channels cannot have a stake in a DTH platform in excess of 20%.
Such irrational skewedness need to be addressed at the earliest,” it added further.

Star has also sought clarity with respect to filing of fresh application where 100% FDI is allowed through automatic route.

Through the exercise, TRAI aims to review various policy issues related to the broadcasting sector with a view to creating a conducive and business-friendly environment in the sector.

Read more at: http://www.televisionpost.com/television/star-india-seeks-liberalised-fdi-regime-for-tv-news-dth/ | TelevisionPost.com
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