Parliament approved the amendments to the Law on Broadcasting though the second hearing
Parliament approved the amendments to the Law on Broadcasting though the second hearing

The Parliament has approved the package of amendments proposed to be made into Law on Broadcasting with 85 votes through the second hearing. 6 MPs voted against.

The voting was held at today’s plenary session. MPs considered the project before the voting.

The project specifies that Public Broadcaster will allot at least 25 percent of all products and not over-the-air broadcasting to programs produced by legal entities under private law.

According to amendments, the Public Broadcaster will be authorized to conduct a public opinion survey / auditory survey to ensure the fulfillment of the content obligations.

In addition, the draft law enables broadcaster to use additional radio broadcasting frequencies to increase radio broadcasting and penetration of radio broadcasting in regions of Georgia.

The project additionally focuses on the inadmissibility of infringement of editorial, management and financial independence of Broadcaster from the administrative agencies.

Amendments apply to procurement as well. According to the existing regulations, the Public broadcaster carries out all types of purchases in accordance with the law on state procurement; according to the initiated amendments, the regulations should not apply to the purchasing of products such as programs, feature and documentary films.

According to project, the Public Broadcaster is authorized to apply the revenues defined by the Georgian legislation, including the assignments received from the state budget to encourage start-up enterprises, TV-Radio and online products, innovative development, and promote environmental development in the field of broadcasting.

The project of amendments envisages separation of authorities and duties of General Director of Georgian Public Broadcaster (GPB) and Board of Trustees.

Changes also refer to commercial advertising and sponsorship of Public Broadcaster. According to the initiative, sponsorship of entertainment programs and TV series are allowed.

In addition, Commercial advertisements in sports programmes, international festivals and contests, at the beginning, during a natural break or at the end of a competition programme, shall not exceed 60 minutes (instead of 30) within a 24-hour period, and 12 minutes (20%) per hour (instead of 6 minutes per hour).

According to project, the Ajara TV and Radio of the Public Broadcaster, and a Public Broadcaster shall allot at least 90 seconds per 3 hours (instead of 60 seconds per hour) free of charge and without discrimination to a social advertisement submitted for placement, at least 10 seconds of which the Public Broadcaster shall allot to a social advertisement related to the integration of Georgia into NATO and the European Union, provided that an appropriate advertisement video has been submitted.