Berlusconi cuts pay-TV ad time – Sky Italia hurts

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's government has approved lower advertising ceilings for pay TV that News Corp's Italian unit says will curtail its growth and that of other networks on Rupert Murdoch's satellite platform.

New regulations will gradually limit the maximum amount of advertising per hour of pay television programming, to 12 per cent in 2012 from 18 per cent last year. Free-to-air broadcast channels, including those on Berlusconi's Mediaset network, will be able to increase advertising to a maximum of 20 per cent per hour from 18 per cent.

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