The SABC and Primedia are expected to make submissions to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa  (Icasa) hearings on digital radio on Thursday.

The public hearings by Icasa are aimed at examining prospects for Digital Sound Broadcasting services in South Africa.

Icasa councillor Dimakatso Qocha explains the interest in moving to digital radio.

“The only reason why the authority is considering licencing or even issuing licences on digital radio is mainly because we have ran out of spectrum in the FM band. We have not been able to licence any new players in the FM space, particularly in the metropolitan areas because of the congested frequency band. The two broadcasters have got different mandates. The SABC has got public mandate and Primedia has got commercial interests. So we are expecting different views from them and we are also very anxious as well as to what these operators will be saying to the authority.”