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Governments meet over BBC future

This press release was published under the 2011 - 2016 Welsh government

Ministers from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have united in a pledge to ensure the interests of all three devolved administrations are central to the UK Government’s work to determine the future of the BBC.
Tuesday 04 August 2015

At a meeting held today in Glasgow on public service broadcasting and the future of the BBC, culture ministers from the three devolved administrations vowed to work together to ensure the process of BBC Charter renewal reflects and prioritises their shared interests.

In a joint statement agreed at the meeting, Scotland’s Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop, Northern Ireland Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilín, and Welsh Deputy Minister for Culture Ken Skates set out how their governments will work in partnership to:

  • hold the UK Government and the BBC to account for the continued delivery of the public service broadcasting principles on which the BBC was founded.
  • ensure each devolved administration is guaranteed a formal, consultative role in developing reviewing and agreeing the new BBC Charter.
  • ensure the UK Government and BBC provide for a truly representative service to all the communities, regions and nations of the UK.
  • ensure the BBC’s clear obligation to provide services for all of its communities, is fully met in relation to both English and indigenous language broadcasting.
  • push the BBC to take a more representative approach to commissioning, talent development and production from and for all the nations and regions.

Hosting today’s meeting, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop said:

“What is clear from today’s meeting is that the devolved administrations have many shared interests and ambitions when it comes to charter renewal – particularly around ensuring we are properly considered and consulted, and that our communities are better represented.”

Wales’ Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates said:

“Wales and the other devolved nations must and will have an equal voice in deliberations on the new BBC Royal Charter. It is vital the new agreement ensures there is sufficient funding for news and non-news programming in Welsh and English and for S4C. It must also fully reflect the interests of the people of Wales and the current and changing devolved settlement.

“People in Wales rely on the BBC for news coverage of public life, but beyond this both Welsh and English language programming in Wales have suffered significant budget cuts in recent years. Any additional funding cuts would further limit BBC Wales and S4C’s ability to meet the needs of its viewers and listeners. The future of broadcasting in Wales is now in serious jeopardy, and poses serious risks to both the Welsh language and our economy.

“It has been clear to me for some time that we in Wales share many of the same concerns as our neighbours in Scotland and the Northern Ireland in relation to the review of the BBC’s Royal Charter. It is vital that we are properly consulted and I am very pleased that as governments we are working together to ensure our interests are protected and promoted in the BBC’s next Charter.”

 

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Culture, tourism and sport 04 August 2015 Programme for Government - Culture and Heritage Public services Mid Wales North Wales South East Wales South West Wales
 
 

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