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SABC in grim financial position

December 5, 2022

By Chris Forrester

South Africa’s SABC public broadcaster has told a parliamentary committee that its financial position is grave. Overall its financial revenues are some 27 per cent below an already squeezed budget.

SABC had hoped for a 64 million Rand (€3.46m) surplus this year but CFO Yolande van Biljon told MPs at a sitting of the nation’s portfolio committee on communications, that SABC’s net loss – for the financial year to the end of March 2023 – would likely be 608 million Rand.

The deficit is being blamed on an unwillingness by South Africans to pay television licence fees, a shrinking primetime audience and underperforming advertising revenue.

SABC told the committee that savings that had been expected from analogue switch-off have also not materialised, with signal distribution costs being higher than budgeted for.

SABC admitted that downsizing its operations by cutting non-essential capital expenditure and operational expenses would be required.

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