The subscription television broadcasting services came under the spotlight at an inquiry at Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa) offices in Sandton, Johannesburg.
The regulatory body held public hearings as part of its mandate to promote competition in the broadcasting and the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sectors.
The purpose of this inquiry is to establish factors that have contributed to new broadcasting licensees not being able to successfully launch their services and attract a number of new subscribers.
The South African Broadcasting Corporation’s main bone of contention in this inquiry is what it describes as unfair competition from its competitors.
SABC Chief Operations Officer Chris Maroleng is worried about advertising limitations among other things, saying some of the public broadcaster competitors seem to be benefiting from more advertising, and this gives them an unfair advantage.
The public broadcaster has proposed that the current regulations be amended to level the playing field in the broadcasting sector. Following this inquiry the information collected will be published for further consultation.
Below is the SABC presentation to ICASA on Inquiry into Competition in the subscription broadcasting market: