Radio Broadcasters Association welcomes NZ merger announcement


The Radio Broadcasters Association has welcomed news that plans to merge Television New Zealand and Radio New Zealand are now off the table.

RBA Chief Executive Jana Rangooni says the radio industry is pleased the New Zealand government has decided not to continue with the merger in its current form.

The radio industry believes the current legislation was rushed and left too much ambiguity around things like editorial independence, public media versus commercial outcomes and the impact the new entity would have on the media landscape in New Zealand.

Rangooni says “We look forward to working with the Minister and officials to look at ways the government can ensure there is a vibrant public and independent media landscape in New Zealand that has high degrees of trust and engagement.”

The industry wants the government to ensure officials address the activities of the global giants like Google and Meta that are not under the same commercial or content regulatory frameworks as New Zealand media companies but are now taking well over half the advertising revenue in the country.

Rangooni says “As well as the big issues there are also simple things like overhauling the Broadcasting Act (1989) that still precludes NZ radio and television companies from running commercials on specific days like Christmas Day when our competitors at Google and Meta take revenue that New Zealand media companies are not allowed to.”

She adds that “for radio specifically, we have been trying to engage with the government on spectrum payments and tenure which last time took over 10 years to negotiate.”

“We hope Minsters and officials will now have time to address the wider industry issues required to build a stronger sector overall.”

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