Sky slashes national broadcaster transmission charges

BSkyB is reducing what it charges the BBC to transmit its TV channels and radio stations by more than £5 million (€5.9m) a year.

BSkyB charges TV and radio broadcasters annual fees to carry their channels and stations on its satellite service with ITV, Channel 4, the BBC and Channel 5 currently paying around £24 million a year.

Sky has said that it will slash those costs by over 50 per cent by 2014 – from £24.4 million to £11 million for the main broadcasters – a combined saving of more than £16 million.

The biggest beneficiary will be the BBC, which has almost 50 radio and TV channels on Sky, which will save £5.5 million a year from 2014.

John Tate, the director of policy and strategy at the BBC, said that most of the cash savings would go toward reducing about £10 million m a year in cuts that the corporation is looking to make in its local radio operations. The BBC pays £9.9 million a year, this will drop to just £4.4 million in staged cuts by 2014.

ITV currently pays £8.1 million but by 2014 will pay £3.1 million, a £5 million a year annual saving. Channel 4 will see its annual fees fall from £5 million to £2.7 million, while Channel 5’s will drop from £1.4 million to £800,000.

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