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Lords inquiry into Channel 4 investigates implications of privatisation


On Tuesday 19 April the House of Lords Communications Committee will quiz figures from the independent production sector, including David Elstein, as well as a broadcasting consumer group, for its inquiry into Channel 4.

Issues such as the long-term sustainability of the channel, the rights and wrongs of privatisation, its potential buyers, and how privatisation would impact its news provision, are all to be discussed.

In the first evidence session at 3.30pm, the Committee will hear from David Elstein, former Chief Executive of Channel 5, media academic and author.

Questions that the Committee will put to the witness include:

  • Do you share the Secretary of State's concern over whether C4 will be able to deliver good content and fulfil its remit in the future?
  • Could Channel 4 be a profitable investment with the current remit
  • Could a privatised Channel 4 deliver on its Public Service
  • Broadcasting obligations such as those relating to the provision of news?
  • How would privatisation impact the indie sector?

In the following evidence session, at 4.30pm, the Committee will take evidence from Mr Colin Browne, Chairman, Voice of the Listener and Viewer, and Mr John McVay, Chief Executive Officer, Producers Alliance for Cinema and TV (Pact).

Questions that they will be asked include:

  • Why do you think that the Government has decided to look at the options for Channel 4's future now?
  • How would privatisation affect your membership?
  • Who might be the likely buyers?

The evidence sessions start at 3.30pm on Tuesday 19 April, in Committee Room 2.

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