Advanced Television

Altice to stop carriage payments for FTA channels

October 8, 2015

From Branislav Pekic in Rome

Portuguese national broadcasters RTP, SIC and TVI have submitted a complaint to the country’s media sector regulator (ERC) against Portugal Telecom’s pay-TV unit Meo.

At issue is the decision of the new owners of the company (Altice) to stop paying for the distribution of the free-to-air channels on the pay-TV platform. According to local daily Correio de Manha, this figure could be around €6 million.

The existing contracts with the terrestrial broadcasters expire at the end of the year or, in some cases, at the beginning of 2016.

Meo’s proposal is to stop paying for content distributed, but to continue charging for broadcasting the TV signals, or that the two figures balance each other.

Public broadcaster RTP, along with its commercial rivals SIC and TVI, have been conducting negotiations with Meo but without reaching agreement.

The existing regulation in Portugal does not define what type of content pay-TV platforms must distribute.

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