SABC to broadcast English Premiership games

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Cabinet has welcomed the news that the SABC will screen English Premiership League games.

Addressing the media in Cape Town earlier today, Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane said this may be a revenue opportunity for the SABC.

“Government hopes that the screening of these games will not sacrifice local sports and also worsen the financial position of the public broadcaster given its current liquidity challenges,” Mokonyane said at post Cabinet briefing.

Mokonyane said Cabinet has also noted the invitation to apply for the licensing of spectrum for the provision of subscription broadcasting services by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa.

“While matters pertaining to licensing are the exclusive domain of the regulator, consistent with Section 192 of the Constitution, the licensing process should be done in a manner that does not destabilize the free-to-air platform during the transition from analogue to digital or encourages uncompetitive behaviour.

“It should ensure that new licensees are able to compete fairly and openly,” Mokonyane said.

Cabinet has also approved the outcome of the commissioned study by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, which sought to determine the amount of spectrum for open access and licensing to the industry. 

The study confirms that spectrum can be licensed to both the Wireless Open Access Network (WOAN) and the industry. 

This will, amongst others, achieve the national policy obligations, cost of communication, remove the entry barriers for the small and medium companies and sustain the current investments.

The Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Dr Siyabonga Cwele, is expected to unpack the report. –