Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Australia passes Digital Radio Bill

The Australian parliament has passed legislation allowing for digital radio to be rolled out in the state capitals by 1 January 2009.

The move has been welcomed by industry body, Commercial Radio Australia, which represents 98 percent of commercial radio stations.

"Digital radio ushers in a new era for radio and for the 95 percent of Australians who listen to radio every week," said Joan Warner, Chief Executive Officer of CRA.

"The passing of the legislation means consumers will get vastly superior radio services sooner rather than later and it gives industry the certainty it needs to move ahead on the massive investment in broadcasting infrastructure that will be required."

She said while the legislation covered the licensing, planning and regulation for digital radio initially in the six cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Hobart, regional and rural Australia would not miss out

"There are around 220 commercial radio stations who play a very important role in the lives of listeners in regional and rural Australia, and it"s important that they share in the benefits that digital technology will bring," she said.

Ms Warner said the act reflected the industry's key policy requests and the vital role commercial broadcasters would play in the roll out and success of digital radio.
Thursday 10 May 2007
(Source: Zacharias Liangas/HCDX)