Portugal backs new DTT FTA channels

The Portuguese government is supporting the addition of two new free-to-air TV channels on the DTT platform from 2014.

One of the channels should be dedicated to information with a focus on regional events, while the second should be composed mainly of content for children and younger viewers, according to Portugal’s Minister of State and Regional Development, Miguel Poiares Maduro. During a parliamentary hearing, he said that the government believes that the current supply of DTT in Portugal is “insufficient” and should be increased.

Recently, two channels from public broadcaster RTP (RTP Informação and RTP Memória) were authorised by media regulator ERC to integrate the FTA offer on the DTT multiplex.

Poiares Maduro also announced the setting up of a DTT monitoring committee, consisting of four members, to further evaluate the market for independently produced content as well as the pay-TV market.

During the hearing, Poiares Maduro anticipated that, in order to ensure the financial sustainability of the public broadcaster, “human resources will have to be reduced”.

In a related development, the chairman of the Board of Directors of RTP, Alberto da Ponte, announced the dismissal of 300 workers.

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